Resistant starch has gradually become a popular food component due to its beneficial physiological effects and heat resistance during processing. In this study, the structure, reaction mechanism, and digestibility of wrinkled pea starch with malic acid and heat–moisture treatment (HMT) are investigated. The degree of substitution (DS) of malate starch, HMT-malate starch, and malate-HMT starch was 0.164, 0.280, and 0.146, respectively. Malate starch remained in its complete particle form and pronounced birefringence was displayed. However, the malate-HMT starch sample was almost completely broken into pieces and lost the polarized cross. All modified starch samples had a decreased swelling power and a new peak at 1731–1741 cm−1
shown by FTIR. From the 13
C CP/MAS NMR (Cross Polarizatio/Magic Angle Spinning Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) spectra, all the modified starches had extra peaks at 38.5 ppm and 172.8 ppm. After esterification treatment, the resistant starch (RS) and slowly digestible starch (SDS) content of starch samples increased dramatically. The higher content of RS and lower enzymatic hydrolysis rate of the malate starch could be used to produce low-calorie foods and have potential health benefits.
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