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Influence of Sulfur Amino Acids on the Volatile and Nonvolatile Components of Cooked Salmon (Salmo salar)

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journal contribution
posted on 21.02.2007 by Lisa Methven, Maria Tsoukka, Maria Jose Oruna-Concha, Jane K. Parker, Donald S. Mottram
Volatile and nonvolatile compounds, which could contribute to flavor, were analyzed in salmon. One hundred twenty-three volatile compounds were identified in the headspace of two different samples of cooked salmon, including lipid-derived volatiles, Maillard-derived volatiles, sulfur volatiles, Strecker aldehydes, nitrogen heterocyclic compounds, terpenes, and trimethylamine. Significant differences between samples were found for 104 of the volatiles. Although the levels of free cysteine and methionine were low in the salmon, sulfur volatiles were formed in the cooked fish, demonstrating that there were sufficient sulfur amino acids present for their formation. Notable differences in sulfur compounds between the samples suggested that small changes in sulfur amino acids could be responsible. When this hypothesis was tested, salmon heated with cysteine had increased levels of many thiophenes, thiazoles, alicyclic sulfides, and nitrogen heterocycles. With the addition of methionine, levels of dimethyl sulfides, two alicyclic sulfides, pyrazines, some unsaturated aldehydes, and alcohols and 2-furanmethanethiol increased. The largest difference found among the nonvolatile (low molecular weight water-soluble) compounds was in inosine monophosphate. Keywords: Aroma volatiles; salmon flavor, cooked fish flavor; sulfur volatiles; tastants; cysteine; methionine; inosine monophosphate