Alkaline cooking and tortilla quality in maize grains from the humid, tropical lands of Mexico

JA Jiménez-Juárez, G Arámbula-Villa, E de la Cruz-Lázaro, MA Aparicio-Trapala


Maize (Zea mays L.) tortilla is the major staple food forthe Mexican population. Nine tropical maize genotypes were evaluated.All samples had white grains, a common characteristic in tropical maize, and therefore they were appropriate for nixtamalized flour industry. Grain, flour, masa and tortilla characteristics of each maize genotype were evaluated. Length, width, thickness, weight of 1000 grains and hardness of grain were determined. Moisture content,proteins, fat, ash, mean particle size, water absorption index, enthalpy,and flour temperature were also evaluated. Adhesiveness and cohesiveness were evaluated in masa. Moisture content, protein, capacityto puff up, roll making, tension and cutting strength were determinedin tortillas. There were significant differences (p≤0.05) in most of theevaluated characteristics. Grain length values varied between 9.26and 11.02 mm for populations 23 and 22, respectively. Grain hardness oscillated between 11.17 (population 32) and 14.75 (landrace Mejen). According to the weight of 1000 grains most genotypes had small grains. The minimum and maximum moisture values of flourand tortillas were 8.33-9.99% and 46.20-50.36%, respectively. The texture of tortillas elaborated from population 32 and landrace Mejenhad the lowest tension and cutting strength, resulting the best genotypes for making tortilla.

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Phyton. International Journal of Experimental Botany. ISSN print 0031-9457 ISSN en line 1851-5657 Fundación Rómulo Raggio Gaspar Campos 861,  Vicente López, Buenos Aires, Argentina (C.P. 1638) Tel 54 11 4791-0868 / 4796-1456