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The best thing since sliced bread

March 6, 2014 — 

The problem of how to add lightness to healthy multigrain breads is a problem being tackled by U of M food sciences and physics researchers. Aside from providing a pleasant texture to bread, bubbles contribute to how freshness is perceived, says PhD student in food science Filiz Koksel. With the help of physics prof John Page, a Distinguished Professor in the Faculty of Science, Koksel was able to analyze the bubble properties of bread and apply some of those findings. She used ultrasound, X-rays and bubble physics.

Martin Scanlon, professor of food science and acting head of the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, says that the hope is that the  groundbreaking research could have a direct effect on what we see on grocery shelves. He told Breakfast Television during a report on the research that the point was “getting good ingredients into your average loaf of bread — and yet, getting good quality, not looking like some of these house bricks that you do see on bakery shelves.”

The researchers have already been approached by a manufacturer of frozen dough, he added.

The student also presented her research as part of the 3MT challenge a few weeks ago. A finalist in the live competition, Koksel’s presentation,  “The Perfect Loaf of Bread: Insights from X-rays, Sound Waves and Bubble Dynamics,” was awarded the “People’s Choice,” a prize worth $1,000.

Research at the University of Manitoba is partially supported by funding from the Government of Canada Research Support Fund.

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