Textured protein (also referred to as texturized protein, textured soy protein or soy meat) is primarily made from a defatted soy flour. It is used to make a variety of vegetarian and vegan dishes or as a meat extender.
Textured protein is less expensive than meat, poultry or fish and is an environmentally friendly source of protein.
How is textured protein made?
Dry protein-based ingredients, liquids and steam are mixed and heated in a pre-conditioner. The paste is then conveyed to a twin-screw extruder where it is processed thermo-mechanically. This allows proteins to be denatured, to deactivate certain enzymes that cause rancidity, to destroy growth inhibitors and to reduce bitterness.
The mix then goes through the die where protein macromolecules are cross-linked to form a cell-based structure and to size the final extrudate. Product texture is then determined by laminar shearing of the protein and evaporation. A rotating blade then cuts the product as it comes out of the die. Cooling and drying to reach 10% or less moisture content complete the process.
The product can then be packaged and sold as an ingredient or directly rehydrated and incorporated into complete meals.
Technology & process advantages :
Clextral twin-screw extrusion systems enable processors to produce textured protein economically and eco-friendly :
- Intensified processing to reduce water and energy consumption, while lowering costs, thus contributing to Sustainable Development
- New die and cutter technology to make complex shapes and sophisticated recipes
- Control of water holding capacity of extruded textured proteins guaranteed by accurate process control
- Variable output capacities, from 50 kg/h to 3,000 kg/h
- Improved process control to ensure consistent results, traceability and optimal hygienic conditions
- Expert advice and testing facilities to design new products and recipes