Sugar Cane and Sugar Beet • Sugar Cane and Sugar Beet are processed in order to produce many different kinds of sugar- caster, granulated, dark brown, soft brown, preserving sugar, muscovado, icing sugar, demerara, sugar cubes and molasses.
Eating too much sugar • Eating too much sugar leads to the build up of plaque and tooth decay. Plaque is a sticky substance made up of bacteria which is found on the teeth. The bacteria breaks down sugar and produces acid that destroys the enamel of teeth.
Heating sugar • When a sugar solution is heated to a very high temperature it thickens and turns brown adding flavour and colour. This is known as caramelisation. • If the solution is overheated it blackens and produces an unpleasant taste. • Dextrinisation takes place when starch is cooked in a dry heat such as the grill or oven. It is broken down to simple sugar called dextrin.
Functions of sugar • Sweetens- cakes, biscuits, cooked fruit. • Adds colour-browning cakes by caramelisation and dextrinisation. • Flavour enhancer- tomatoes, baked beans, canned vegetables • Aerates-traps air when creamed with fat • Decorates-sprinkled sugar, butter icing, icing • Speeds up fermentation-provides food for the yeast
Alternatives to sugar • Artificial sweeteners are low in calories. Manufacturers often use a mixture of artificial sweeteners • Bulk sweeteners are similar in taste and are used in similar amounts in recipes. • Intense sweeteners are used in small amounts as they are much sweeter than sugar.