Caster sugar has a silkier mouthfeel. It lends itself beautifully to marinades, frostings, ice cream, and other dishes that aren’t cooked to melt down or fully dissolve the sugars. It lacks the anti-caking agent of powdered sugar, often cornstarch, which makes it a better choice for use in meringues, where you don’t want the thickening of the starch.
A staple of commercial bakers, you may consume more of it than you think: A number of pre-mixed drink “powders” with sugar use caster, mixed in with their color and flavor ingredients, because it dissolves rapidly without a lot of effort.
It is used by all chefs and in home kitchens around the world, save North America, where it’s just starting to make a beachhead with domestic chefs.
WHAT IS IT?
A form of refined sucrose, caster sugar can be made from cane or beet sugar. It sits between table-sugar and powdered sugar in the white sugar spectrum.
Allergies – For those who like desserts who have corn allergies, caster’s lack of an anti-caking agent, usually cornstarch, allows them to enjoy caster as a good topping substitute for powdered.
Toxicity Warning – All sugar is toxic at high levels, rates at which most developed countries consume sugar daily. My recommendations is to use all sucrose sparingly, so caster sugar should only be rolled out where necessary as a textural tool in your culinary workshop.
A FEW IMPROVISATIONAL RIFFS:
- Add to coconut milk with pasteurized eggs for amazing coconut ice cream;
- Add to chocolate that you grind yourself;
- Makes a smoother vanilla sauce for chocolate pasta as a dessert;
- Combine with Vietnamese Cinnamon as a topper for homemade donuts;
- Toss on fresh berries or some mandarin orange slices to up the sweetness a touch.
Caster sugar is an invention of the mid-19th century industrial England. It was designed to be shaken out of a caster, a metal lid with holes used also to dispense salts and peppers. So the grind is finer than table sugar, but not as fine as powdered sugar. To achieve this, sugar was sorted after milling and processing by grade in a series of sieves with finer and finer holes. Caster is the mid-fine sieves’ product.
- Superfine sugar
- Baker’s sugar
- Bar sugar
- Berry sugar
MY SHINY TWO
It’s all about the grind, and SpiceJungle‘s is an excellent, reliable caster sugar!