Availability of freeze-dreed fruits

Virtually any type of fruit can be made available in the freeze-dried form. It's merely a matter of being able to find the appropriate source. Examples of fruits currently available in freeze-dried form include strawberries, peaches, raspberries, blueberries, oranges, lemons, and pineapple. Many others can be made available such as boysenberries, marion berries, kiwi, lime, guava, papaya, passion fruit, bananas, and grapefruit. Exotic and lesser known tropical fruits could even be made available provided an appropriate raw material source could be located. Freezedried fruits can be put in a wide variety of physical forms including slices, dices, and powders.

Use the strawberry as a typical example as to what can be done. These can be provided in the small whole form about 1 inch in diameter, slices can be cut to 1/4 of an inch or 3/8 of an inch, cubes can be diced in 3/16, 1/4, 3/8 of an inch sizes, or the berries can be granulated into powders.The principal application form for confectionery products is the powder form. However, there are some applications to utilization of a small piece in order to get a different textural identity into a cream-filled center, and there are some companies enrobing small whole strawberry pieces.

If one chocolate-enrobes the small whole freeze-dried strawberry, then one is not going to get the flavor release of the strawberry until the piece is reconstituted with saliva in the mouth. To improve the flavor response, a possibility would be to partially-rehydrate the piece with some type of sweet syrup prior to enrobing. This would be a means of adding sufficient moisture to stimulate the taste buds, yet maintain a low water activity. This would be another opportunity to get the yogurt-fruit combination by enrobing with a compound yogurt coating.

Citrus products offer several flavor opportunities. Juice from the lemon or the orange of the edible tissue can be freeze-dried to produce one flavor. The entire fruit including the peel can be freeze-dried and granulated into a powder to produce another unique citrus flavor. The peels themselves can be freeze-dried and placed in a powder form to give yet another flavor concept; there even exists a fourth opportunity. Sources are available of the pigmented portion of the skin where most of the oil sacs are located. This segment of the orange and lemon peel is known as the flavedo and results in a very distinct flavor. These peel shavings can be left in a particular form or granulated to a powder.

Advantages of freeze-dried fruits in confectionery products    Chemical and microbial concerns    Availability of freeze-dreed fruits    The freeze drying process
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