Sweetening the Day

April 14, 2008

Most of us use regular white granulated sugar and don’t really give it much thought. Why substitute? Because, most common white granulated sugar is highly processed leaving zero nutritional value and lots of calories. It has also likely been farmed using chemicals and pesticides and contains additives and preservatives. It’s this type of super-processed sugar that upsets our bodies causing insulin levels to spike, crash, and, then, we are hungry again! Figuring out what to substitute with is the hardest part. Experiment with varieties of natural cane sugars instead of granulated white. We bet you will find a favorite. Work it into your everyday cooking and begin to explore a whole new world of non-white sweeteners.

Shopping Tip: There is no standard labeling and not all natural cane sugars are of the same quality or variety. You will find white versions like the organic cane sugar sold at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods and even less-processed brownish colored “raw” canes that include: Demerara, Barbados, muscovado and turbinado. Unlike commercial brown sugar, which gets its color from the addition of molasses, these sugars get their natural brown color from local sugarcane juices. Look for these words on the packaging: organic, natural, raw, unrefined, whole, and/or unbleached. And, some are even fair-trade certified.

Recipe: Strawberry Lemon Curd Cake

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