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Does Freezing Maintain the Quality of Jasmine Rice?

Posted by James Plamondon on May 27, 2016 . 0 Comments

Yes.

Many scientific experiments have already demonstrated conclusively when it comes to preserving the special qualities of jasmine rice (flavor, fragrance, and tenderness) during storage, the colder the storage temperature, the better the preservation (all else being equal), to at least -20°C (the lowest temperature studied).

These experiments include, but are not limited to:

  • Goufo 2010: Some factors affecting the concentration of the aroma compound 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline in two fragrant rice cultivars grown in South China
  • Yoshihashi 2004: Effect of Storage Conditions on 2-Acetyl-1-pyrroline Content in Aromatic Rice Variety, Khao Dawk Mali 105
  • Piggott 1991: Changes in Physicochemical Properties of Rice during Storage
  • Yokoe 2006: Determination of Shelf Life of Milled Rice Stored at Different Temperatures
  • Wilkie 2004: Flavour qualities of new Australian fragrant rice cultivars
  • Tananuwong 2011: Changes in physicochemical properties of organic hulled rice during storage under different conditions

Here are some quotes: 

Yoshihashi 2004: "With increased storage temperature, the content of 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline decreased even faster (Figure 1). Cold storage at 5°C [the lowest temperature studied] in sealed LDPE bags preserved the contents most effectively. Generally, rice storage at low temperature retarded flavor quality deterioration caused by intermolecular reactions operating in parallel. Especially, enzyme catalyzed reactions were drastically inhibited at low storage temperature (Yasumatsu and others 1964; Chikubu 1970). Because 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline [2AP] is quite volatile, it is recommended that aromatic rice variety be stored and handled at a low temperature." In other words: The colder the storage temperature, the better the preservation (all else being equal).

Guofo 2010: "In most cases, fragrant rice tastes best when it is fresh...[In this experiment] 2AP content decreased with time and appeared to be significantly affected by the temperature. It was demonstrated that higher 2AP concentrations were obtained with the shortest storage time of 3 months and the lowest storage temperature of -4°C [the lowest temperature studied]." In other words: The colder the storage temperature, the better the preservation (all else being equal).

Piggot 1991 (as summarized in Champagne 2008): "The effects of storage on the flavor of undermilled and wellmilled rice were determined by a descriptive panel (Piggott et al 1991). Samples stored at 30°C had higher scores for pungent, oily, moldy/musty, sour (taste), bitter, sour (aroma), and muddy/ earthy, while those stored at -20°C had higher scores for sweet (taste), fragrant, smooth (aroma), sweet (aroma), grassy, and smooth (mouthfeel). Scores for oily and starchy (mouthfeel), fragrant, smooth (aroma), and muddy/earthy increased with storage time. Both the under-milled and well-milled samples underwent these changes during storage at 30°C but they were greater for the under-milled rice. Free fatty acids (FFA) formed a greater proportion of the total surface lipid in the under-milled than in the wellmilled samples for the high-temperature stored samples. Storage at -20°C completely suppressed this increase in FFA. Hexanal and carbonyls followed the same trend as the FFA." In other words: The colder the storage temperature, the better the preservation (all else being equal).

To the extent that it is possible for the Scientific Method to establish facts, this fact has been established: When it comes to preserving the special qualities of jasmine rice during storage, the colder the storage temperature, the better the preservation (all else being equal), to at least -20°C (the lowest temperature studied).

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