Syrian dried kishk (SDK) was irradiated at 5, 10 and 15 kGy doses. The effect of gamma irradiation on microbial, physicochemical and sensorial properties of SDK samples was investigated. The results showed that the proximate composition of SDK did not change with dosage. However, physicochemical properties showed a significant (p < 0.05) decrease in total acidity, and a significant (p < 0.05) increase in total volatile basic nitrogen (TVBN) of SDK with increase in dosage. Irradiation treatment increased the Hunter color L* and b* values, whereas, as a* and ΔE values were decreased with increase in irradiation dose. Sensory panelist found no significant differences (p<0.05) between the non irradiated and irradiated samples of SDK for color and texture. While, the highest used dose (15 kGy), decreased the score values of flavor and taste. Based on the results, irradiation resulted in reduction of the number of total viable count (TVC), total mould and yeast count (TMYC), and total coliform count (TCC) of SDK. TVC, TMYC and TCC growth were not observed in any of the irradiated SDK samples with 10 or 15 kGy. It can be concluded that gamma irradiation may improve the storability of SDK and thus can be recommended to be used as an effective alternative method for preserving and extending the shelf life of SDK.
Key words: Syrian kishk, gamma irradiation, chemical properties, microbial load, sensory