It has been a challenge for the restaurateurs at a global level to maintain food quality. Food quality not only deals with organoleptic properties but also with the nutritional adequacy and microbiological safety of the food served. However, a number of food poisoning outbreaks exhibit the reality of food served at restaurants.
Objectives: The research was carried out with the following objectives:
• To analyse the microbiological adequacy of boondi raita served at the selected restaurants
• To identify the pathogens present in boondi raita served at the studied restaurants
Methodology: Microbiological quality examination of food samples collected from the selected restaurants was done using spread plate method, counting CFUs, physical examination of colonies, smear preparation, gram staining and microscopic examination of slides. Standardized recipe prepared was also analyzed for comparative analysis.
Results: Boondi raita served at public restaurants had the highest number of bacterial colonies with a mean value of 1.30 × 1011 CFU per ml. at 10-7 dilution. The boondi raita prepared as standardized recipe had shown minimum CFUs at all the dilutions. There was presence of Bacillus cereus, E. coli, Pseudomonas, Aspergillus and Penicillum in boondi raita of private eateries whereas Bacillus cereus, Aspergillus and Penicillium were detected in public sector samples. Boondi raita of fast food restaurants also had Bacillus cereus, Aspergillus and Penicillium in unsafe amounts.
Conclusion: Although results of t-test showed a significant difference in bacterial as well as fungal CFUs among all three types of selected restaurants yet all were having pathogens in unsafe limits. The t-test outcomes however highlighted fungal contamination to be less in case of private and fast food restaurants as compared to public restaurants.