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Using invert sugar as a corn syrup replacement

I made invert sugar to use as a replacement in caramel corn and marshmallows. I've never worked with invert sugar before and it is considerably thicker (even at room temp) than corn syrup. Should I use a one-for-one replacement, or should I thin the invert sugar (and if so, at what ratio)?

asked by SeaJambon over 5 years ago

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Rebecca Vitale
Rebecca Vitale

Rebecca is a Recipe Tester for Food52

added over 5 years ago

Hi SeaJambon-- interesting idea, will look into this myself! Found this on thekitchn.com, I assume ratio remains one-to-one:

"To Use the Syrup - This syrup tends to be thicker than corn syrup and can be difficult to pour or measure. To make it a little more workable, remove the metal lid from the glass jar and microwave the jar of corn syrup on HIGH in 30 second bursts until it’s pourable. This usually seems to take a total of 1 - 1.5 minutes. Alternatively, you can put the jar in a saucepan of simmering water to warm the syrup.

One Last Note - Re-heating can sometimes cause the syrup to begin crystallizing. Because of this, we’ve found it best to store the syrup in half-pint (1 cup) jars, which is what most recipes call for. This way we can heat and use one portion at a time without leftovers."

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SeaJambon
added over 5 years ago

Thanks Rebecca - that's actually where I got the recipe I used (great minds think alike?!). ;) However, I still wasn't clear if it was a one-for-one replacement for corn syrup, and wondered even more when I discovered just how thick it is -- so thick that straight out of the fridge it doesn't move. At all. Solid block. (BTW: the part about being difficult to measure is TRUE!!! Totally true! Even warmed).

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Rebecca Vitale
Rebecca Vitale

Rebecca is a Recipe Tester for Food52

added over 5 years ago

Aha! That article came up and I was wondering if it was not just coincidence :) I just looked up Nutrition Facts on high fructose corn syrup, and it looks like it's 75% total carbs (by mass), and specifically 25% sugars (by mass). Not sure how to interpret that other 50% of carbs, but if the invert syrup you made is MORE than 75% sugar (by mass, again), then I think diluting is reasonable?

I saved some simple syrup from candying lemon peels today and I can't believe how hardened it is now, without having caramelized, at room temp! And it has little crystals forming in it. My finger doesn't even dent it. Anyway, just a side note... interested if this works out for you!

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Rebecca Vitale
Rebecca Vitale

Rebecca is a Recipe Tester for Food52

added over 5 years ago

Q&A at the bottom here may be helpful: http://www.chefeddy.com/2009/11/invert-sugar/

In one answer he advises substituting 16oz corn syrup with 8oz sugar/8oz invert syrup. Sounds like a slight dilution.

SeaJambon
added over 5 years ago

Rebecca - just a note on your candied lemon syrup. Assuming your candying process was lengthy (mine is close to an hour) you no longer have simple syrup, but probably something closer to a lemon peel infused invert sugar (evaporation). I candy ginger all the time, so have much of this lovely ginger syrup available. I use my ginger syrup in ice tea and cocktails (lovely, lovely, lovely!). However, when I've candied either lemon peel or orange peel, I've found the resulting syrup way too bitter to use as a sweetener -- but I'll bet it would be a do some nice things to the right cocktail!! :) Let us know how you use it; I'll be curious!

Rebecca Vitale
Rebecca Vitale

Rebecca is a Recipe Tester for Food52

added over 5 years ago

Thanks, SeaJambon! I actually just didn't know what to call it because it wasn't the goal of the recipe. From my rough reading on inverts I figured it was at least partially inverted. This thread has gotten me more interested! It's not that bitter, actually... I blanched peels a couple times first in boiling water. Syrup went for about 30min, up to 230deg F.

Rebecca Vitale
Rebecca Vitale

Rebecca is a Recipe Tester for Food52

added over 5 years ago

No, no it doesn't! Other way around.... not a dilution.

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nutcakes
added over 5 years ago

I hope someone has come along who has used it, so guide you. But the article, and a few others I scanned, implies one to one ratio. Also the article mentions both HFCS and corn syrup seemingly interchangeably. Karo syrup corn syrup (glucose) is not HFCS (glucose and fructose, like table sugar.)

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Rebecca Vitale
Rebecca Vitale

Rebecca is a Recipe Tester for Food52

added over 5 years ago

Thanks, nutcakes, point taken on difference between HF and light corn syrup. Assuming that you, SeaJambon, are wishing to replace light corn syrup with the invert syrup, the Nutrition Facts for light corn syrup show that it is 77% carbohydrates (by mass)... all sugars, this time! Looking at the recipe you used:

(42oz gran cane sug / ~58oz total) * 100 = 72%

So, I would say that evaporation during prep leads to approximately 75-77% sugars and the intended substitution ratio is 1:1.

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