Preservative effect of combined treatment with electrolyzed NaCl solutions and essential oil compounds on carp fillets during convectional air-drying.
ABSTRACT The antimicrobial and antioxidant effects on carp fillet samples of treatments with alkaline electrolyzed NaCl solution EW (-) prior to treatment with acidic electrolyzed NaCl solution EW (+) and 1% solutions of the essential oils consisting of 0.5% carvacrol and 0.5% thymol (1% Cv+Ty) were tested. First carp fillet samples were treated with EW (-), then EW (+), followed by 1% (C+T), represented as [EW (-)/EW (+)/1% (Cv+Ty)] for 15 min, during drying at 45 degrees C. Samples were subsequently evaluated by microbiological, chemical and sensory analyses. Microbiological analyses indicated that the initial total microbial counts of samples treated with EW (-)/EW (+), 1% (Cv+Ty) or EW (-)/EW (+)/1% (Cv+Ty) were significantly (p< or =0.05) reduced, compared with the control sample. Treatment with EW (-)/EW (+)/1% (Cv+Ty) gave the strongest overall inhibition of microbial growth when compared to all of the other treatments. The volatile basic nitrogen (VBN) value of samples treated with EW (-)/EW (+)/1% (Cv+Ty) was kept at low level (18.46+/-0.45) until the end of drying period (5 days), compared with control samples (40.33+/-0.58). Treatment with EW (-)/EW (+)/1% (Cv+Ty) during drying significantly reduced the peroxide values (PV) and thiobarbituric acid values (TBA). Sensory evaluation indicated that there were significant differences (p< or =0.05) in the color, odor, taste, flavor and texture, on the end of the 5-day drying period between samples treated with EW (-)/EW (+)/1% (Cv+Ty), as compared to all of the other treatments. We conclude that treatment with EW (-)/EW (+)/1% (Cv+Ty) had stronger antimicrobial and antioxidant effects than all of the other treatments on carp fillets during drying, and could be a good alternative to artificial preservatives in food industry.