Nutritional Characterization and Storage Ability of Salicornia ramosissima and Sarcocornia perennis for Fresh Vegetable Salads

Antunes, M.D.; Gago, C.; Guerreiro, A.; Sousa, A.R.; Julião, M.; Miguel, M.G.; Faleiro, M.L.; Panagopoulos, T. (2021).


The aim of this work was to study the potential of two halophytes for fresh salads. Sarcocornia perennis (SAR) and Salicornia ramosissima (SAL) plant tips were harvested in May and July, and stored at 4 °C for 14 days. At harvest, mineral analyses (Na, K, Mg, Ca, P, N, Fe, Zn, Cu, Pb and Cd), chlorophyll content, protein, β-carotene and ascorbic acid were performed. Color (CIELab), phenolics, antioxidant activity and microbial contamination were measured at harvest and after 14 days storage at 4 °C, and a taste panel evaluated the products. SAL had generally slightly higher values of vitamin C, phenols and carotenoids than SAR. In SAR after 14 days of storage, the levels of phenols and the antioxidant activity were higher than at harvest, both in May and July. The opposite was observed for SAL. In this case, only the antioxidant activity was higher after 14 days of storage. Microbial contamination was very low, not reaching even half of critical limits. Both halophytes had good nutritional value, being suitable for use as fresh salads which can be stored for up to 14 days at 4 °C. SAR seems to be a better source of antioxidants, Ca and Fe than SAL and has less general quality and nutritional value changes from harvest time through cold storage. Fresh tips of both halophytes showed better appearance and nutritional quality when harvested in the early season (May) than at the end of the season (July).

Keywords: halophytes; antioxidants; quality; minerals; storage; flavor.

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