How to Make a Finer Brown Sugar

Sounds crazy but there are instances when a finer sugar crystal is needed. e.g. I used brown sugar to make polvoron and pastillas. I found the sugar crystals too big and gritty. It was so noticeable. It could be clearly distinguished from the rest of ingredients. Sounds of cracking sugar crystal were heard.  If I were going to sell it, customers gonna know easily that I used brown sugar instead of white. They might as well reject it.

Other reasons:

1) Regular sugar crystals are gritty and feel rough when rubbed in between palms. Some have smaller sizes and feel smoother. I prefer the smaller granules but it is not always available.

2) Confectioners’ sugar is a very fine sugar. It will save the time and effort of grinding. However, brands for commercial use contains cornstarch and anti-caking agents and maybe some other unfamiliar chemicals. Common label tells about 3% cornstarch. Cheating is a common practice so it might be higher than declared. Plus the anti-caking agent. We never know the specifics of this agent, it maybe or it may not be safe.

3) Choosing brown sugar will free us from any chemical traces brought by refining. Grinding it further manually gonna make us more relieved.

How to:

a) Get the manually operated coffee/corn mill. Wash it well and dry. It is necessary to remove dirt and any residues of previous milling job.

b) Assemble it on sturdy table. Adjust burr tightness. Place the sugar in mill cone and start grinding. Repeat this process until you are satisfied with the particle size. Tighten the burr for even finer ground.

This was the result I got after five passes.

brown sugar after milling

And this was the original form before milling.

brown sugar crystal before milling

Manual mill is recommended for the process. Electric powered mill generates too much heat that can melt sugar. We want powdered sugar, not syrup. Slow motor speed and burr cooling mechanism might solve the problem.

Electric blenders might as well melt the sugar. On the other hand, slow blade rotation will not accomplish anything.

Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.

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