Sugar– The topic of sugar can tend to get lengthy as there are many different sugars available today from granulated in all of its forms ranging from superfine to coarse grain crystal sugars for decorating, to liquid forms of corn syrup and molasses to artificial sweeteners such as Splenda and Stevia. The list will go on and on.
White Granulated Sugar– or table sugar has fine to medium-sized granules and is the sugar most often used in recipes. There is a science that takes place in recipes , mainly the recipes asking for the Creaming Method that require granulated sugars to get the job done. Which is why it is difficult in Creaming Method recipes to substitute any other type of sugar. This mix method forces the sugar granules, which if you look under a microscope have pointy jagged edges, to pierce the fat in the recipe in turn producing air bubbles. If you were to substitute a liquid sugar such as corn syrup or honey, or even a superfine sugar you will not achieve the same result that you would had you used the superior granulated variety. Sugar is hydroscopic, meaning it is “water loving”. It attracts moisture in the batter which reduces the amount of gluten formed in the flour. Less gluten in the batter makes a baked good with a more tender crumb and a lighter end result. Not to mention its preserving properties.
Superfine Sugar also known as Castor Sugar is white granulated sugar with much smaller grains. It is what the name implies, Superfine Grain. It is a good choice in making meringues or in recipe where you want the sugar to dissolve rapidly. Read about how the different sugars can affect your baked good here in There is a Method to my Madness
Granulated Sugar 1 cup = 200 g / 1 teaspoon = 4 grams / 1 tablespoon = 12 grams
Superfine Sugar 1 cup = 200g / 1 teaspoon = 4 grams / 1 tablespoon = 12 grams
Light Brown & Dark Brown Sugars– Originally brown sugar was made in the process of fully refining white sugar. In the refining of white sugar there is a number of steps from the start of the harvest of the sugar cane stalks to the end result of the refined sugar that you buy in the store.
At one time brown sugar was just one step in the process of making white sugar where some of the natural molasses was still left in. Nowadays though Brown Sugar is simply fully refined white sugar that has molasses added back into it. The darker the color the stronger the molasses taste.
Equal weights of brown and white sugars have the same sweetening power. But because white sugar is denser than brown sugar we must firmly pack the brown sugar in the cup when using volume measures in order to get the same sweetness of that same amount of white sugar.
Substituting brown sugar for white sugar in a recipe will produce a baked good that is a little bit more moist with a very subtle butterscotch flavor.
I tend to use light brown sugar vs dark brown sugar more in my recipes all the way around. I am not against dark brown sugar, I have used it, I guess I just prefer to have one less ingredient hanging around that has a shorter shelf life. (Brown sugars can dry out if not stored properly)(Proper storage of brown sugar is in an air tight glass jar or plastic bag.)
If I wanted to hike up the molasses flavor in my recipe, I usually just do so with molasses.
Light Brown Sugar (packed):1 cup = 21o g
Dark Brown Sugar (packed):1 cup = 215 g
Homemade Light Brown Sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200g)
- 1 tablespoon molasses (15g)
Place ingredients in mixing bowl and mix until the molasses in completely incorporated. Use as regular light brown sugar.
Homemade Dark Brown Sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200g)
- 2 tablespoon molasses (30g) )If you want a more robust flavor and another tablespoon or two)
Place ingredients in mixing bowl and mix until the molasses in completely incorporated. Use as regular dark brown sugar.
Confectioners’ Sugar– Also known as Icing Sugar Or Powdered Sugar. You may have heard me refer to confectioners sugar as 10X sugar. I do this because in my shorthand way of speaking and writing recipes, it truly is 10X sugar! Meaning it has been processed (or sifted down) 10 times!
It also has cornstarch added to it to prevent clumping.
In other countries it maybe known as Icing Sugar
Confectioners Sugar- 1 cup = 115 g / 1 pound box = approx 4 cups