The present study investigated the effects of fenugreek flour (Trigonella foenum-graecum) and debittered fenugreek polysaccharide (FenuLife®) inclusion on the physical and sensory quality characteristics, and glycaemic index (GI) of chickpea–rice based extruded products. Based on preliminary evaluation with different proportions of chick pea and rice, a blend of 70:30 chickpea and rice was chosen as the control for further studies. The control blend, replaced with fenugreek flour at 2%, 5% and 10%, or fenugreek polysaccharide at 5%, 10%, 15% and 20%, was extruded at the optimum processing conditions as specified in the detailed study. The extruded products were evaluated for their physical (moisture retention, expansion, hardness, water solubility index (WSI) and water absorption index (WAI)), sensory (flavor, texture, color and overall acceptability) characteristics and in vitro GI to evaluate their suitability as extruded snack products.
Due to the distinct bitter taste, inclusion of fenugreek flour was not acceptable at levels more than 2% in extruded chickpea based products. Addition of fenugreek polysaccharide resulted in slight reduction in radial expansion (P < 0.05), while longitudinal expansion increased. WAI increased while WSI decreased compared to the control (P < 0.05). The mean scores of sensory evaluation indicated that all products containing fenugreek polysaccharide up to 15% were within the acceptable range. There were no significant differences (P > 0.05) between products containing 5–15% fenugreek polysaccharide in their color, flavor, texture and overall quality.
Fenugreek, in the form of debittered polysaccharide (FenuLife®) could be incorporated up to a level of 15% in a chickpea–rice blend to develop snack products of acceptable physical and sensory properties with low GI Index.