CARBOHYDRATE CONTENT IN BULGARIAN AND TURKISH CAROB PODS AND THEIR PRODUCTS
AbstractCarob, Ceratonia siliqua, is cultivated for ornamental and industrial purposes in many Mediterranean countries. This study assessed carob pulp and syrup, a rich source of carbohydrates and sugars, by evaluating content of reducing sugars and total sugars in carob pulp before extraction of syrups. We identified the sugar content before and after treatment by using thin-layer (TLC) and high performance liquid chromatography with refractive index detection (HPLC-RID). It was established that total sugars increased with extraction and heat treatment. Sucrose (34.2 g/100 g dry weight; dw), glucose (11.1 g/100 g dw) and fructose (6.5 g/100 g dw) were the major sugars identified and quantified in pulp of the Turkish carob. Ceratonia siliqua pods of Turkish origin produced higher levels of total and of reducing sugars (fructose and sucrose) than did the pods from Bulgaria. The carbohydrate content in the syrup prepared from Turkish carob pods was highest, with the sucrose content especially reaching up to 45 g/100 g dw. The data are discussed in terms of nutritional and energy value of the carob pod. The carob and obtained products (flour or syrup) are identified as highly caloric and as a prospective energy source alternative to cocoa and its products.
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