Thursday 3 October 2013

Rice Syrup and Chocolate Sauce

It's time I let you know the great news about rice syrup. You may remember my post Food play... what's coming up where I let you know that I had discovered rice syrup and was looking forward to, well, playing with it. And play indeed I have.

Here's what I said about it recently,
With no fructose and just 3% glucose, it's looking like a good option. The other 97% is made up of complex carbohydrates, which means it's absorbed much more slowly in to the bloodstream, so doesn't raise the blood sugar levels in the same way as pure glucose. Again, a great substitute for condensed milk, golden syrup, and maple syrup. Tastier and sweeter than glucose syrup, it will be great on your pancakes and cereal, and even your toast if you like.

I've used it in muesli bars, lemon cream pots, chocolate pudding, homemade hot chocolate and chocolate sauce. Oh and I... umm... drizzle it on my weetbix every morning. If I was a pancake girl I'd be drizzling it on them too. It's an absolute star - first equal favourite (with glucose powder) as a sugar alternative. I can't see I'll be living without it.

So first up on the list of delectable things that can be done with rice syrup is chocolate sauce.

When I was growing up chocolate sauce was that thing that got made in the evenings when you just fancied a little something and hadn't made any other plans (or puddings). Weirdly, perhaps, it often got poured over a few spoonfuls of oats and, to be honest, I don't remember any other accompaniments. Nowadays I still love it with oats (it's totally not weird), and always banana, and if there's cream in the house I can never go past that. But enough of my secrets. 

I introduced the chocolate sauce tradition to Kent when we were married and we had it on occasion. I think he thought we were a bit crazy having it as the main event, rather than just drizzled over ice cream or something. And he really found it just too sweet. It is too, you could feel the sweetness almost sting the back of your throat. And now I have found the solution. Rice syrup instead of sugar brings a gentle sweetness and really hits the spot (in a good way). Kent would have loved it.

The recipe below is based on Mum's one with obvious changes. I really recommend you change it around if you like, change the amounts of syrup or cocoa to suit your tastes. I admit I really only add butter because it was in the original recipe (and everything is better with butter in it) but I am sure you could get away with leaving it out. Omitting the butter and using a non-dairy milk will make it friendly for many too. Have a play.

Chocolate Sauce

4 tablespoons rice syrup
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup milk

Put rice syrup in a pot on the stove and warm, mixing in the cocoa powder as it starts to warm.
Add butter and milk and stir until simmering.

PS - I must say, I do love it with icecream too! Serve with whatever you fancy.

Rice syrup - the star of the show.

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  1. I'm glad I've found you. With a daughter who has a number of food allergies, I fall into the trap of preparing the same tired recipes. Here, I can read your recipes and make food more exciting for her. I'd love it if you could share where you buy the less conventional ingredients from and their cost, if you don't mind?

    1. Hi Leanne, I have mentioned a few things along the way but couldn't say where off the top of my head, so need to collate it all in one easy-access place. Thanks for the prompt. For the moment, Rice Syrup can be found at Moore Wilson, Commonsense Organics and New World Chaffers (they have the cheapest. In the organic section). Prob at other bigger, well stocked New Worlds too. $9.50 for 500g jar.

    2. Thanks for these details.

    3. I get a lot of my 'alternative' ingredients from the same places as Angela mentioned, also Pak'n'Save Petone have a remarkably good organics section with some Trade Aid foods (their brown jasmine rice is fab!!), and Bin Inn on Jackson St have a wide and reasonably priced selection of different flours (tapioca, white rice, corn, etc etc etc).

    4. Thanks Shorty, you've mentioned something about PnS Petone once before, which surprised me as my local isn't so well stocked. Could be well worth the trip as I'm sure the prices will be good.

  2. Wonderful, Angela, and I don't think you're weird AT ALL. Well, not about this.

    Could be very good for the dairy-free in our family!

  3. Well this looks like a definite winner. Will have to pick some up for the saturday morning pancakes. Thanks for all the hard research you are doing!

  4. Wow - that looks worth getting some rice syrup for!
    I was searching for rice syrup in UK shops and came across the following page - I'm sure there's nothing you don't already know, but there's some interesting nutritional information on various sugar alternatives:
    There's also a link to "recipes using natural sweeteners", which might be interesting:

    1. Thanks Caroline, loads of interesting stuff. There are a few alternatives listed there that are worse for your health than standard sugar, which is an issue that has been bugging me recently! I've never heard of Amasake - that sounds rather promising.