The effect of co-fermentation on proximate composition, invitro protein digestibility and amino acid profile of maize-mungbean malt complementary food was evaluated. Cereal-based complementary foods from non-malted local crops result in high viscous porridge and low nutrient availability. Inherent limitations like high viscosity, poor digestibility and low bio-availability of the macronutrients in cereal base infant formula can be improved using malted legume and subsequent fermentation of the mix. Mungbean grains were malted for 72 h, dried, dehulled, milled and sieved. Yellow maize grains were degermed after tempering in water for 15 min, dried, winnowed, milled and sieved. Complementary foods were formulated with varying ratios of maize:mungbean malt flours (0:100, 90:10, 80:20, 73:30, 60:40 and 50:50) and fermented by backslopping for 72 h, dried and milled. The formulated maize-mungbean malt complementary foods were evaluated for proximate composition, amino acid profile and invitro protein digestibility. Food blends with higher quantity of mungbean malt had high protein, ash, fiber and low carbohydrate content. Addition of mungbean malt increased the digestibility of the complementary food and the blends substituted with 30% mungbean malt had highest protein digestibility (84.71%), lysine (5.4 g/g protein), methionine (4.02 g/g protein), histidine (6.88 g/g protein) and Arginine (3.09 g/ g protein) contents. The findings of this study established that supplementation of maize flour with mungbean malt flour improves the quality of protein digestibility and amino acid contents of end product and can find applications in a variety of products that can be of benefit for infants especially among rural dwellers, urban poor and industries.
The complementary food produced in this work is made from locally available raw material, yellow maize and mungbean malt flours which are readily available. The addition of amylase rich malt flour could not only enhance the nutritional quality but reduce the high viscosity by which traditional complementary foods are known. Also the technology of processing (malting and fermentation) can easily be adopted at household level by majority of rural dwellers and urban poor. This will invariably reduce the cost implication of industrially made complementary food.
Amino acid, complementary foods, invitro protein digestibility, malt addition, proximate composition.