Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Returning to Roots: Sugar Cubes

While this isn't necessarily about returning to roots in terms of those basic food skills that we forget as we are further removed from the production of certain food items, this is about returning to roots in the sense of taking a moment to enjoy the little things... like pretty little sugar cubes accompanying an afternoon tea or a morning's coffee.

Food colouring and flavouring are certainly optional and infinitely customizable. You can mix white, brown or cane sugar with water... add flavour extracts... add colours. You can mix and match... you can opt for simple precision. I'm already dreaming up my next combinations.

2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla syrup
1 tablespoon water
Food colouring

Mix your vanilla, water and food colouring in a small bowl. A little bit of food colouring goes a long way... four drops of red yielded a pretty pink.

Mix the wet ingredients into your sugar and stir to combine the colouring evenly. The sugar will take on the water but will not dissolve. The mixture will be more like wet sand.

Press the sugar into your ice cube trays or candy molds (these silicone ice cube trays from Ikea work great). Use the back of a spoon to compact the sugar and firmly pack it in the mold.

Flip the mold onto a parchment lined baking sheet and lightly tap to release the sugar. If you have compacted your sugar well, you should be able to slice the long stick mold into smaller cube-like chunks using a sharp knife.

Leave the sugar cubes to dry. Try not to prod and poke at them as they are still quite fragile and can crumble if manipulated too much. I left mine for a good hour before trying to move them. By then, they had dried sufficiently to hold their shape but the bottoms were still damp, so I flipped them on their sides or upside down and let them dry for another hour. The hearts were rather large so I left them for an additional hour to make sure that they fully dried. You can even leave them to sit overnight, if you want to be absolutely certain that they are dried fully.

Place in a pretty glass jar or sugar bowl for your next brunch or tea party.

1 thought(s):

doulanana said...

I love your blog and admire your work, and I wish I could cook half as good as you so that is why I chose you to receive the Liebster Blog Award! Go to my blog for more info and congratulations Christine!

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