Food-grade monoglyceride oil foams: the effect of tempering on foamability, foam stability and rheological properties†
Foams with a continuous oil phase may be stabilized using crystalline particles. Those systems are compelling because of their potential in edible oil structuring, modifying sensorial properties and creating healthier food products. This study aimed to relate oleogel (unwhipped state) properties to oil foam (whipped state) properties using a monoglyceride-sunflower oil model system. The properties of crystal–oil mixtures were influenced by time and temperature during preparation and storage. Therefore, oleogels were prepared using different tempering protocols and their resulting microstructure was investigated with rheology, differential scanning calorimetry and X-ray diffraction. The corresponding oil foams were characterized in terms of foamability and foam stability. The properties of both systems were studied immediately after preparation as well as after 4 weeks of storage. We demonstrated that there is a large influence of the time-temperature history on the foam properties. Partially crystallized mixtures were shown to form weaker structures which capture more air because of their lower viscosity and as crystallization would preferentially take place at the interface. They were characterized by larger bubbles and were less stable and firm. It is proposed that their rheological properties are mainly dominated by interfacial contributions. Fully crystallized and stored monoglyceride–oil mixtures were seen to form stronger gel networks which included less air, contained smaller air bubbles and were stable during storage. It is hypothesized that these samples also included an important bulk gelation contribution.