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Rooms To Go Coffee Tables And End Tables – In a previous post we presented the Chair of Ecuador together with a summary of all the research and development work of two Ecuadorian products, plantains (musa paradisiaca) and physalis (physalis peruviana l.). On this occasion we will present only one of the products which is the physalis or uvilla as they call it colloquially in its country of origin, Ecuador.

The uvilla (physalis peruviana l.) is a plant that belongs to the Solanaceae family and its fruits grow and ripen in its calyx. Its origin is not clear, but it is believed that it was in the South American Andes such as Peru (Leggue, 1974), Brazil (CRFG, 1997) and Ecuador (Bartholomaus et al., 1990).

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Mainly, we find in the tropical area of ​​America, the Antilles and Australia. According to several sources, the main uvilla producing countries are Colombia, South Africa, New Zealand, Kenya, India, Italy, Argentina, South Africa, United Kingdom, Canada, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Honduras and Peru. Worldwide, the main exporting countries are: Zimbabwe, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Kenya, South Africa, Peru, Bolivia and Mexico. (Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Aquaculture and Fisheries, 2011, Ecuador, FAO 1982).

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The genus “physaloides” includes from 90 to 100 species (D’Arcy, 1991; Martínez, 1998) and one of those edible today is the Peruvian physalis, also known as guchuba, uchuva, uvilla, gooseberry or Andean cherry.

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It is a fruit considered “functional food” since according to Harman (2004) it has immunostimulating, anticancer, antibacterial, antiviral and diuretic properties. In addition, medicinal properties such as purifying the blood, reducing albumin in the kidneys, alleviating throat problems, strengthening the optic nerve, cleaning cataracts and controlling the ‘amoebiasis are contributed to this (Corporación Colombia Internacional, University of the Andes and the Department of National Planning). , 1994). It is a source of provitamin A and vitamin C (Herman, 1994b).

Inside we worked intensively on fermentations. Therefore, the first development was to ferment uvillas for later analysis through surveys carried out on a total number of 100 people, both professionals in the gastronomy sector and real consumers. The tastings were of an affective type with the simple aim of obtaining a positive or negative response regarding the acceptance of the fermented fruit.

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It was inspired by a Japanese technique and custom of lactic fermentation of fruits, such as the famous “umeboshi”. The word “ume” or Japanese apricot is actually a plum (prunnus mume, Armenian mume) being the literal translation “dried plum”. Umeboshi is traditionally used to make umeshu macerated liquor with umeboshis.

In the case of umeboshi, it is a Japanese apricot that is grown at the beginning of summer when it begins to change its color from green to yellow and is preserved through lactic fermentation in salting for a few months Then they are dehydrated in the sun and kept semi-dry. They are usually red in color because they are fermented with red shiso leaves, but they also exist without shiso. The most common way to consume it in Japan is in a cup of bacha tea, desalted in tempura or, more significantly, on a cup of rice (hinomau bento, refer to the Japanese flag). (Hosking, R., 2001)

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The objective of this development is to obtain fermented physalis similar to a Japanese product called “umeboshi” of great gastronomic value, promoting its use and spreading it as a new Andean product marketed worldwide.

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It is called the cellular process where glucose is used to obtain energy, in which glucose is partially oxidized and where the residual product is lactic acid, traditionally used in the production of mainly lactic products such as yogurt, viili, creme fraiche , lambic-type. beers, as well as vegetables and fruits such as sauerkraut, kimchi or umeboshi.

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Lactic fermentation takes place in three phases; Initially, anaerobic bacteria, such as Klebsiella and Enterobacter, act more strongly in fermentation, producing an acidic environment favorable for subsequent bacteria. The second phase begins when the environment is too acidic for most bacteria and Leuconostoc mesenteroides and other Leuconostoc spp. they take control In the third phase, various Lactobacillus ferment the remaining sugar and lower the pH.

These bacteria have the great characteristic of being halophilic, unlike many other microorganisms that die in saline conditions, this is why lactic fermentations have always been linked to salt percentages, we are always talking about a minimum of 2% – 3% of salt in relation. to the total weight of what has to be fermented. In this case, in addition to generating a selective environment for the lactic acid bacteria to live, the salt extracts water from the products by osmosis, accelerating the fermentation. In the case of “umeboshi” it is traditionally made with 20%-25% salt, but can be found in the market from 4%.

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Traditionally, for this type of fermentation, glass or wooden vessels are used, always taking care that the product is completely covered with liquid to prevent the product from being in direct contact with oxygen, but it has an aerobic fermentation, therefore that the vacuum. bags are currently used (still leaving oxygen) to facilitate handling.

Different percentages of salt were tested: 2%, 3% and 6%, this range was chosen since in the fermented products and the previous tests are acceptable ranges of salt. All were done in a vacuum bag with 85% vacuum.

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The fermentation was done in a refrigerator at 4 °C for 2 months, it was done in this way since in tests with other products, the cold fermentation gave better results from the organoleptic point of view, improving the taste and l smell.

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The tests carried out with a higher amount of salt are too salty for us and much of the specific taste of the physalis is hidden behind the intensity of the salt. Tests with less amount of salt had better acceptance. Even so, the first tests can be used after soaking and desaling the product, insisting that part of its flavor and aroma is lost in this soaking.

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We can say that the fermented uvilla can be used like the “umeboshi” due to its very similar characteristics of acidity and saltiness, as part of a garnish, sauces, etc., or as a simple snack. In this part, the fermented product is distinguished from the fermentation liquid that is extracted from the uvilla, a transparent and salty liquid that can be used as any fermented sauce, enhancing any preparation such as dressings, broths, sauces, marinades , etc.

After several months of development of fermented products and various organoleptic and consumer tests, we saw that the most accepted was 3% salt, with the acceptance of 80% in a product acceptance tasting carried out on 100 people, another percentage of salt such as 6% and 8% were accepted in less quantity, being the least accepted 12%.

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This opens up great possibilities for us in different lactically fermented fruits. We have already tried different fruits and vegetables looking for other uses for lactic acid fermentation, in these cases having very good nutritional and gastronomic results for use in restaurants and on a daily basis.

– ALVARES BOXES, GILBERT; CAMPOVERDE VIVANCO, GENNY; ESPINOSA MEJIA, MARCO; Technical manual for the cultivation of uvilla (physalis peruviana L.) in Loja. Loja, Ecuador, 2012.

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– PISCATORI, GERARDO; MARTINEZ, ORLANDO. Quality and maturity of Cape Gooseberry (physalis peruviana L.) in relation to fruit color. National University of Colombia, Santafe de Bogota. 1999.

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– PISCATORI, GERARDO; MIRANDA, DIEGO; WILSON PIEDRAHITA, JORGE ROMERO. Advances in the cultivation, post-harvest and export of gooseberry (physalis peruviana L.) in Colombia. National University of Colombia, Faculty of Agronomy, Bogota, 2005. ISBN: 958-701-603-3.

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– JUNTAMAY TENEZACA, ELVIA ROCIO. Nutritional evaluation of gooseberry (physalis peruviana L.) dehydrated at three temperatures using a dehydrator. Riobamba, Ecuador, 2010.

– MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE, LIVESTOCK AND FISHERIES, GENERAL COORDINATION OF THE NATIONAL INFORMATION SYSTEM; DIRECTORATE OF RESEARCH AND MULTISECTORAL DATA GENERATION (DIGDM). Economic agroecological zoning of the cultivation of uvilla (physalis peruviana L.) in continental Ecuador. Quito, Ecuador, 2014.

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