When your passion kicks in, it really kicks in. I’m so thirsty for knowledge, I read anything and everything involving cooking and the kitchen. What’s amazing is that even though the thought of creating your own recipes is daunting, especially with baking, if you are equipped with some knowledge it becomes so much easier to experiment even if you’ve never been to chef school and learnt the science behind every ingredient. My mission is to learn everything I can and keep improving the cook I am. My little research on sugar and why different recipes call for different types of sugar has left me enlightened and full of excitement, at least now I know why brown sugar is needed in those delicious choc-chip cookies. Here’s a brief lesson on sugar.
Sugar serves to help gluten develop and make baked goods tender. Because sugar holds onto moisture it keeps your baked goods tender for longer.
Granulated sugar – this sugar has larger crystals and the most widely used sugar in cooking and baking. It can be used in almost any baking. Great for making caramel and crispy cookies.
Castor sugar – best used for light sponges, meringues and cakes with a low flour content such as brownies. This sugar is necessary when you want to beat air into your ingredients, when whipping egg whites for cakes, meringues and whipped cream.
Brown sugar – adds chewiness to baked goods such as choc-chip cookies. The molasses in the brown sugar makes it chewy and moist. If you want more chewiness use a dark brown sugar.
Powdered sugar/Icing sugar – finely ground sugar with addition of cornflour to prevent clumping, good for icings and frostings and to make melt in your mouth cookies. Great for dusting over cakes and pastries.