Development of an indigenously
fermented Indian bread –
doli ki roti
Effect on phytic acid content and in vitro
digestibility of starch and protein
Anshu Bhatia and Neelam Khetarpaul
Department of Foods and Nutrition, CCS Haryana Agricultural University,
Purpose – Some of the indigenous fermented foods of India seem to be very nutritious but not
scientiﬁcally proved. Moreover, due to urbanisation and changing food habits and lifestyles, people are
abandoning such nutritious recipes. This paper aims to collect such indigenous technical knowledge,
standardise it under laboratory conditions and analyse it organoleptically and for various nutrients.
Design/methodology/approach – Doli ki roti – an indigenous nutritional fermented bread popular
among Indian Punjabis migrated from Pakistan – is a wheat-based product. Natural fermentation is
carried out in an earthen pot called doli in vernacular language. The ﬁnal product was a stuffed
puri-like preparation (a puri is a fried small fermented wheat bread stuffed with spice-cooked
chickpeas). Its preparation was learned from rural households and standardised under laboratory
conditions. The product prepared was improved further to make it rich in micronutrients and protein.
It was analysed for proximate nutrients, phytic acid and in vitro digestibility of starch and protein
using standard AOAC methods.
Findings – The unfermented bread had 632.3 mg phytic acid per 100 g but this reduced signiﬁcantly
to an extent of 5-18 per cent due to fermentation at 358C and for both time periods, i.e. 18 h and 24 h.
This signiﬁcant reduction in the phytic acid content culminated in a marked improvement in protein
(28-50 per cent) and starch (57-88 per cent) digestibility. The higher the temperature and the longer the
period of fermentation, the more signiﬁcant (p , 0:05) were the changes seen in the phytic acid
content, and a signiﬁcant and negative correlation between the two further strengthened the ﬁndings.
Research limitations/implications – Such a product can be further improved nutritionally by
making it rich in beta-carotene. Instead of frying, it can be baked in the oven for health-conscious
people suffering from hypercholesterolemia.
Practical implications – On the basis of the ﬁndings of the present study, people should be
encouraged not to abandon healthy eating practices but continue with their traditional healthy food
habits. They should be motivated to prepare and eat fermented foods having the right combination of
cereals, pulses and leafy vegetables.
Originality/value – This is an original paper based on an original idea. It is based on the research
ﬁndings of the MSc thesis of the ﬁrst author, who worked under the guidance of the second author.
Keywords Food products, India, Fermentation, Cereal foods
Paper type Research paper
Phytic acid or phytate acts as an antinutritional factor which is widely distributed in
seeds. It is a hexa phosphate of inositol. Unreﬁned cereals and millets are the richest
source of phytates. They bind iron, zinc, calcium and magnesium which contribute
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Vol. 39 No. 4, 2009
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