Syrup

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slick4591
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Re: Syrup

Postby slick4591 » Sat Dec 23, 2017 1:08 pm

TexasBred wrote:
Boot Jack Bulls wrote:This is going to sound completely ignorant, but what do you folks use cane syrup for???? Is it like maple syrup is for us northerners? Something to put over pancakes and waffles, and sweeten other things????

Much stronger, sweeter and thicker. Works best on a big fat biscuit with some butter inside. ;-) Most ribbon cane syrup I've seen was sold in cans.


Looked sorta like a paint can. We had a discussion like this a number of years ago here and someone suggested a place to order ribbon cane out of Alabama, I think. It came in a jar and didn't taste the same as the stuff we used to get out of east Texas. I don't think I ever finished the jar. We ate it like TB said on a buttered biscuit.
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Re: Syrup

Postby Jogeephus » Sat Dec 23, 2017 1:22 pm

greybeard wrote:
It can be thick or runny depending on if you want to make molasses or syrup

I've never heard of molasses being made from sugar cane...always made from sorghum.


Sorghum is probably the most common but the true difference between syrup and molasses is the viscosity and this is determined by how far you process the juice.

Here is a photo showing different products from the same juice. The left is pure cane syrup. If flows similar to the syrups most are familiar with. The middle is much darker and flows more like honey or similar to what you might know as blackstrap molasses. Its flavor is more earthy and the aroma more complex. On the right is thicker than mud and its flavor is even more concentrated and more aromatic. You need the patience of Job to pour but the flavor is more intense than all the others but your coffee and biscuits will get cold before any of it comes out the bottle. For this reason, it isn't used much on the table but for baking. This is rare stuff and I doubt you could find it in a store because it would be cost prohibitive to make and the margin for error in processing is slim and if you are not careful you'll end up with a kettle full of burnt sugar or candy. For that reason its not made often. However, for those who bake, this is stuff is gold and will turn out the best gingerbread cookies imaginable.

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Re: Syrup

Postby Jogeephus » Sat Dec 23, 2017 1:37 pm

I use it for all sorts of things from curing bacon and ham to simply biscuits.

The meats with the dark tint are sugar cured meats - mostly different types of bacon.

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Sugar cured wild pig ham

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Then biscuits

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Re: Syrup

Postby TexasBred » Sat Dec 23, 2017 4:39 pm

Joe my dad and granddad use to make ribbon cane syrup. PRetty much like the pics that have been posted except their "pan" or whatever they called it was about 3-6 and divided up into 4-5 different departments. The juice went into one end and it literally circulated from one department to the other and dad and granddaddy would be skimming the trash etc. off the top all the time. Grandaddy wouldn't let anybody but him skim the last section of the syrup pan. (If I remember right there is an art to keeping the fire just right under it as well. Gotta have it hot enough to do it's job but don't want it so hot that it might scorch the juice and ruin the syrup. Last section had a small spigot where they would drain and filter the finished product into a small can (half gallon i think)....Use to sell for about $10-12 dollars a can). Probably much more now. You get a reputation as a good syrup maker and you would sell out everyday as soon as you canned it.
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Re: Syrup

Postby Jogeephus » Sat Dec 23, 2017 5:55 pm

TexasBred wrote:Joe my dad and granddad use to make ribbon cane syrup. PRetty much like the pics that have been posted except their "pan" or whatever they called it was about 3-6 and divided up into 4-5 different departments. The juice went into one end and it literally circulated from one department to the other and dad and granddaddy would be skimming the trash etc. off the top all the time. Grandaddy wouldn't let anybody but him skim the last section of the syrup pan. (If I remember right there is an art to keeping the fire just right under it as well. Gotta have it hot enough to do it's job but don't want it so hot that it might scorch the juice and ruin the syrup. Last section had a small spigot where they would drain and filter the finished product into a small can (half gallon i think)....Use to sell for about $10-12 dollars a can). Probably much more now. You get a reputation as a good syrup maker and you would sell out everyday as soon as you canned it.


That's interesting. Never seen a setup like that. The kettles we use were also used to scald pigs when you aren't making syrup. The slanted sides make moving a pig around easy.

How we do it is we strain the juice as it runs out the press. This goes in a bucket and then in the kettle. Once it first begins to boil we skim this off using pots with a bunch of holes punched in them. This gets the bulk of the debris out and this is the main source of the skimmings which some keep and make into what we call Buck which is a crude alcoholic beverage that can leave you with an immense hangover.

Once it begins to boil rapidly we place a ring on the kettle and this forces the bubbles upward and these bubbles push the fines out ot the kettle and onto the rim. Here we drag rags through the foam and the rags collect the fines. After about 3.5 hours of boiling the bubbles get big and then the head falls. The fall abrupt and tells you to really watch the syrup because like you say you can easily ruin it. Someone with a good eye can look at how the syrup runs off a paddle and tell when its time to pull for syrup or for molasses.

Once the decision is made to shut down the heat the syrup is scooped out and poured over a cloth and into a rectangular steel box that's insulated and has a spigot on it. In a way, this makes skimming the fines with the cloth unnecessary but that is how it was always done so we aren't going to change things now. Besides, it keeps the kettle tended. Once in the container we bottle it hot and seal with a cap and then we start another batch.
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Re: Syrup

Postby greybeard » Sat Dec 23, 2017 8:41 pm

I've never seen a big kettle used anywhere except the deep south. My grandfather used evap pans similar to what TB described. Had wooden slats to make up the weir the juice traveled down.
A less fancy version of this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BgdZuHsSlVs
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyxwlJkC_es
along these lines:
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... r_1330.jpg
https://awriterandhiscuy.wordpress.com/ ... -molasses/
I believe they do Maple syrup the same way, in pan type evaporators.
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Re: Syrup

Postby Jogeephus » Sun Dec 24, 2017 5:46 am

Thanks GB, that is interesting.
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