Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Coconut Sugar

It seems that coconut sugar is all the rage these days. Along with coconut water, juicing green things, healthy smoothies, and, of course, homemade sweet potato fries. Sweet potato fries? Yes, sweet potato fries, but those are for another discussion on another day. Right now I want to talk about coconut sugar. I tried to find some reliable information on the benefits of coconut sugar versus regular sugar but mostly what I found was that coconut sugar is lower on the glycemic index, it is considered to be a better alternative to refined sugar and brown sugar, especially for diabetics, and it is on the up trend. While I normally buy organic sugar and try to avoid all refined products, I was pleased to learn that coconut sugar is high in minerals and B vitamins, in addition its other positive benefits. And apparently, it tastes delicious in banana muffins. Take a look below...

A sprinkling of pecans on top is the perfect finishing touch.

Can't you just taste them? At our house we love banana bread and banana muffins. We sometimes buy bananas and wait for them to over ripen just so we can make bread or muffins with them. The other day we had three perfectly ripe bananas. There was not a speck of green left on them and they hadn't started to develop "freckles" yet. I told my husband that if he refrained from eating them, I would make banana bread in the next day or so. This announcement is always met with glee. He unhesitatingly replied, "Ok!" 

Combining the wet and dry ingredients.

Little did he know however that his beloved banana muffins would be getting a make-over. I used whole spelt flour instead of regular wheat flour and I used coconut sugar in place of white or brown sugar. I've sometimes substituted brown sugar because it provides a richer and rounder flavor. That is, until I tried using coconut sugar. Like brown sugar, it too has a carmel-like flavor and adds a deeper flavor dimension to the bananas, while maintaining a lower glycemic index level. The coconut sugar also provided just the right amount sweetness to the muffins to keep them from bordering on being cupcakes.

... and a glass of oat milk... mmmm.....

Will I continue to use coconut sugar when this small, slightly costly bag runs out? I haven't yet decided for sure but I can say that I love the adventure of baking with coconut sugar. And a good sprinkle on my oatmeal isn't a bad way to start the day. The question is, will you try it? Will you pick up a package of coconut sugar to substitute in your favorite baking recipes? If you do, please let me know how it turns out. And if you've already tried coconut sugar, I'd love to hear what you think of it...

1 comment:

  1. I tried it in the chickpea chocolate muffins I made a couple months ago, and I thought it was great - I've added it to something else recently but I forgot what it was haha... but good to see there are benefits to it! It just feels much lighter and fresher than regular sugar :)