Background: Aqueous leaf extract of Wrightia tinctoria has been in use for artisanal
cheese preparation in diverse parts of India. Scientific validation behind the milk clotting potential of
W. tinctoria stem proteases purified through three-phase partitioning (TPP) has been attempted.
However, its contribution to cheese quality standards has not been tried yet.
Objective: To evaluate the suitability of three-phase partitioned W. tinctoria (WT) stem proteases in
fresh cheese making.
Methods: Fresh cheese was prepared using W. tinctoria TPP proteases and its characteristics were
compared with that of commercial plant milk coagulant, Enzeco® (CEz) and rennin (CRn). Yield, organoleptic
and textural properties, total fat, protein and moisture content of all cheese were determined
according to FSSAI standards. Toxicity of the TPP proteases was assessed on the shrimp
model (Artemia salina egg and Litopenaeus vannamei post-larval shrimps).
Results: TPP proteases were found to be non-toxic and safe for human consumption with no change
in egg hatchability and survival of the shrimps in comparison to that of control. Cheese analysis results
indicated perceptible resemblance in nutritional characteristics of WT cheese with control
cheese. Yield, textural properties and organoleptic acceptance of WT cheese resembled more closely
with that of CEz cheese.
Conclusion: Observation from the study paves the way for the acceptance of W. tinctoria proteases
as a suitable vegetable rennet for fresh cheese making.