How can different sugars affect Christmas pudding?
Learn how dark muscovado sugar impacts Christmas puddingView blog post
A dark, moist and fine grain crystalline with high molasses content.
Dark cane muscovado sugar’s rich flavour and moisture density mean it is primarily used in the baking industry. Its most popular applications are fruitcakes, Christmas puddings and cakes, and chocolate-based cakes and desserts. As it is a darker form of muscovado sugar, it is used to develop a rich flavour and dark colour in these applications as well as to increase their volume.
Dark cane muscovado sugar is also a popular sugar ingredient because it enables a one product application. Its high molasses content and resistance to high temperatures replace the need to use both straight sucrose (white sugar) and molasses during production, helping manufacturers create greater efficiencies in their processes.
It is commonly used to add texture to sauces, too. Its fine grain texture means it dissolves easily and as a result, it is also used in a wide range of savoury sauces, chutneys and pickles.
This darker form of muscovado sugar is not only used in savoury sauces, though. It is often a key ingredient in the production of sweet sauces, with the most notable application being toffee sauces. However, it is important to note that both dark cane muscovado sugar and light cane muscovado sugar are used to produce toffee sauces. The difference is that the former is used to develop richer flavoured toffee sauces while the latter is used to create a lighter and more subtle flavour.
Dark cane muscovado sugar is rich in flavour and dark in appearance.
It is a natural sugar product that retains a high level of molasses due to being only partially refined. This results in high nutritional content, with the product containing the following vitamins and minerals:
• Vitamin B6
10 - 20⁰C, dry conditions and away from direct sunlight
In excess of 18 months if left unopened
Dark cane muscovado sugar is stored in 25kg paper sacks, which are then stacked five by eight into 1000kg palettes for safe storage and transportation. It is also stored and distributed in 1000kg flexible intermediate bulk containers (FIBCs).
|Description||Approx. (on sample)|
|Sucrose||90.0 – 94.0%|
|Invert sugar||2.5 – 3.5%|
|Ash||1.0 – 2.0%|
|Moisture||2.5 – 3.5%|
Dark cane muscovado sugar is a partially refined sugar that can only be made from sugar cane.
First, sugar cane is harvested and taken to sugar mills for processing. There, the stalks are washed, sliced, shredded and crushed to extract juice. The raw juice is then heated and purified, before it is boiled under vacuum to evaporate the natural water, leaving a thick and sweet amber juice. This thick juice is then seeded with sugar crystals to encourage crystal growth into a super-saturated massecuite syrup. During this time the colour, smell and flavour of molasses form.
Next, the massecuite syrup must be spun in a centrifugal machine to partially separate the crystals from the liquid. The third and fourth spins produce the two forms of muscovado sugar. Each spin lasts two minutes and the more spins the sugar has the weaker the colour will be.
As a result of this partial refining process, a moderate proportion of molasses is retained in the raw sugar. The result is then dried, cooled and bagged. It then undergoes quality control tests before it is ready for shipping.
Once it arrives at Ragus’ production facility, the raw sugar is then expertly blended with sugar cane molasses, which gives muscovado sugar its sticky texture and unique flavour. The finished sugar then undergoes further quality processes such as metal detection to remove any impurities. When these checks have been completed, dark cane muscovado sugar can be packaged and distributed to customers, ready for use in their end products.
Ragus adopts British Retail Consortium (BRC) standard procedures and carries out a HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) process of screening, drying, metal detection using inline rare earth magnets and final metal detection.