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Determination of suitable palate cleanser for spicy tom yum soup


*Corresponding author
Assumption University Hua Mak Campus, Department of Biotechnology, Ramkhamhaeng Road, Bangkok 10240, Thailand


Palate cleansers are required in sensory tests as they help improve the accuracy for sensory responses especially for foods containing strong flavour. The objective of this study is to determine a suitable palate cleanser that can be used to relief spiciness in a Thai dish, tom yum soup. The untrained judges rated the spiciness of three levels of spicy tom yum soups before and after using five palate cleanser strategies, water, bread, unsweetened milk, 10 percent sucrose and nothing. One palate cleanser strategy was used per session, thus the judges performed a total of five sessions. All of the palate cleanser strategies have shown to exhibit the ability to relief spiciness of the tom yum soups where milk was most effective Thus, using milk as a palate cleanser strategy follow by a water rinse is considered to be one of the appropriate palate cleanser choices for spicy soup.


There is a growing application of sensory studies in food products in which minimizing bias is one of the keys to obtain robust result. When conducting sensory experiments, judges are prone to bias, such as adaptation that could alter any perceived taste intensity of foods due to the residual taste/flavour left in the mouth. Accordingly, it is important to for the judges to stabilize the oral cavity before evaluating each additional product (1). It could be done by using a palate cleanser, an important element in sensory evaluation which is commonly used to remove any residuals in the mouth before and during the sensory tests. It also neutralized the oral environment in order to minimize any sensory adaptation or error in sensory judgments. Several studies have shown the importance of palate cleanser for evaluating basic tastes, such as sourness and bitterness (1, 2), as well as textural or mouth-feel attributes such as astringency (3, 4).
Generally, water is commonly used to rinse the mouth. However, water may not be suitable for certain products that contain chemical irritants such as those in spicy foods. Capsaicin is a compound c ...

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