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Perceived temperature effects on microwave heated meals and meal components

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Two experiments were carried out to evaluate the effect of serving temperature on the pleasantness of microwave heated ready meals and meal components. Serving temperature clearly affected sensory attributes and the pleasantness of the meal components. However, while instrumental measurements had indicated large differences in temperatures between two microwave heated ready meals with different arrangement of meal components, the consumer panel perceived only small differences in some sensory attributes. Regardless of temperature differences, the overall pleasantness of the two microwave heated meals was judged to be similar. We concluded that serving temperature is critical for the pleasantness of food but, to the extent that it varied in microwave heating, it did not have a major impact on the overall pleasantness of the meal. Possibly in long-term use, very uneven temperature distribution may become a nuisance and therefore, the arrangement of meal components with a more uniform temperature distribution is recommended.
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Keywords: microwave heating; perceived temperature; pleasantness of foods; ready meal; sensory quality

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2001

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