Brown sugar is crude raw crystallized sugar obtained directly from sugar cane juice. Its flavour is more intense than refined white sugar with a hint of aged rum flavour that evokes the Caribbean sun. Until the 16th century, it was sold solely in loaf form.
Brown sugar has played an important role in Quebec cuisine when it comes to desserts.
Belgians also have some traditional sweet recipes that use brown sugar.
Brown sugar also found a niche in northern France. Here brown sugar is added to everything from game stews and duck with prunes to Flemish red cabbage and sausage, and is also sprinkled over a plain waffle for a snack.
Brown sugar is closely linked to the discovery of the West Indies. It’s the brown gold of the 17th century that forged the bonds of slavery. At one time you would have seen long lines of blacks carrying bundles of sugar cane to the mill, while others returned with their arms loaded with bagasse, going off to dry it to make fuel.
The juice obtained by pressing or grating sugar cane is purified using lime (calcium hydroxide); it is then concentrated, filtered and crystallized.
- gives a pleasant flavour to chutneys
- used in some fruit cakes
- sprinkled over fruit
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