Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Andalusian cuisine: cooking with "miel de caña" (sugar-cane syrup)

Eggplant with miel de caña

Miel de Caña, sugar-cane syrup, is a rarity in Europe. In fact, there's only one factory in Europe which produces it: El Ingenio in Frigiliana, a tiny white village of Andalusia just north of Malaga. It's unique flavor is great for cooking, and if you can get your hands on some, it's a great way to add an Andalusian touch to your cooking.

Here are some recipes to use the spectacular "miel de caña", starting with my personal favorite!

Eggplant with sugar-cane syrup. Cut the eggplant into thin slices and place them in a bowl with salted water for half an hour. Make a mixture with egg, 1 cup of milk and flour (as required) and dip the drained eggplant in the batter before frying. Once cold, place on a dish and sprinkle with molasses just before serving. 

Other interesting recipes:

Torrijas. Slice the bread to a finge's thickness. Soak in sweet wine and dip in beaten egg. Then fry them in hot oil and remove from the pan when golden brown. Dip in miel de cañathat is on the verge of boiling, remove from the pan and drain well.

Sponge Cakes. Add 2 1/2 cups of bread wheat flour to 1 1/2 cups of miel de caña. Mix well and then gradually add 1 cup of milk, 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or almonds) and 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder (or bicarbonate). Bake in a moderate oven.

Flan. For 1 kg of bread dough, use 1 cup of cold vegetable oil, 1 cup miel de caña and 1 teaspoon of baking powder. Mix to a spongy consistency and then place in a greased flan dish. Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon and decorate with almonds. Moderate oven.

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