Texture of semi-solids: sensory and instrumental measurements on vanilla custard desserts

R.A. de Wijk, L.J. van Gemert, M.E.J. Terpstra, C.L. Wilkinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

135 Citations (Scopus)


A trained panel developed a set of sensory attributes describing flavor, odor, mouth feel and after feel sensations elicited by commercially available vanilla custard desserts. Two main sensory dimensions, one running from "melting" to "thick" and another one running from "rough" to "creamy-soft" could be recognized in the resulting sensory space. The commercial custard desserts were well distributed along the rough-creamy dimension but not along the melting-thick dimension. In a second study, model custards were used that varied in levels and type of thickener (carrageenan and starch) and fat content. This resulted in a better distribution of the custard desserts across the sensory space, and in a confirmation of the two main sensory dimensions. The melting-thick dimension was primarily related to thickener content and to the viscosity measured instrumentally. The rough-creamy/soft dimension was primarily related to fat content. High fat custards produced less sensations of dryness and roughness, more sensations of flavor, and more sensations of creamy and fatty mouth and after feel than their zero-fat containing counterparts. This was confirmed by PLS modeling that showed a good prediction of creamy/soft mouth feel sensations from a combination of flavor/taste sensations (creamy and fatty flavors and absence of bitter/chemical and sickly flavors), mouth feel sensations (thickness and fattiness) and after feel sensations (fatty coating and absence of roughness). It is argued that possible mechanisms by which fat affects the attributes that are part of this dimension include lubrication (friction) and flavor release. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305-317
JournalFood Quality and Preference
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • influence food flavor
  • perception
  • emulsions
  • creaminess

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