Effects of food tenderizers on nutrient content and cooking time of NARO Bean 3 Variety
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Dry beans are the most commonly consumed type of legumes in Kampala because they stay for long and are nutritious. Dry beans are mostly faced with the problem of hard to cook phenomena hence require a lot of fuel and time to properly cook and for this reason many restaurants and homesteads use different bean tenderizers to soften beans while cooking hence saving time and fuel. This research investigated effect of bean tenderizers on cooking time and nutrient composition particularly iron (Fe) and zinc (Zn) of the NARO bean 3 variety. To answer this, 5 sets of accurately weighed beans of 29g were washed, put in different saucepans with water and then put to boil on a red-hot charcoal stove. In the first set of beans, a small piece of rock salt (like a size of a bean) was added, in the second set, a pinch of baking powder was added, in the third set, a piece of paracetamol tablet was added, in the fourth set, the beans were socked for about 8 hours prior to cooking before bringing them to boil, the fifth set of beans was the control and no treatment was added to them. More cold water and charcoal were added throughout the cooking period and the time of cooking was recorded. Fe and Zn content was analysed and determined using the atomic absorption spectrometry method. Results demonstrate that the beans in which the rock salt was added demonstrated the least cooking time (116 min), followed by the beans in the control (143 min), then beans soaked overnight (163 min) and the beans with paracetamol (172 min) and baking powder (175 min) took the longest time. The beans in the control had the highest Fe (257.4mg/100g) and Zn (151.7mg/100g) content. Among the treatments, beans treated with rock salt had the highest Fe (217.7mg/100g) content followed by beans treated by baking powder (210.9mg/100g), and paracetamol (189.5mg/100g). Overall, beans soaked overnight had the least Fe (65.6mg/100g) and Zn (42.9mg/100g) content. Beans with baking powder had the highest Zn (116.9mg/100g) content, followed by beans with rock salt (115.4mg/100g) then paracetamol (62.5mg/100g). The study suggests that the NARO Bean 3 variety cooks fast, and bean tenderizers affect cooking time and nutrient composition of dry beans.