How to Make a Finer Brown Sugar

Sounds crazy but there are instances when a finer sugar crystal is needed. e.g. I used brown sugar to make polvoron and pastillas. I found the sugar crystals too big and gritty. It was so noticeable. It could be clearly distinguished from the rest of ingredients. Sounds of cracking sugar crystal were heard.  If I were going to sell it, customers gonna know easily that I used brown sugar instead of white. They might as well reject it.

Other reasons:

1) Regular sugar crystals are gritty and feel rough when rubbed in between palms. Some have smaller sizes and feel smoother. I prefer the smaller granules but it is not always available.

2) Confectioners’ sugar is a very fine sugar. It will save the time and effort of grinding. However, brands for commercial use contains cornstarch and anti-caking agents and maybe some other unfamiliar chemicals. Common label tells about 3% cornstarch. Cheating is a common practice so it might be higher than declared. Plus the anti-caking agent. We never know the specifics of this agent, it maybe or it may not be safe.

3) Choosing brown sugar will free us from any chemical traces brought by refining. Grinding it further manually gonna make us more relieved.

How to:

a) Get the manually operated coffee/corn mill. Wash it well and dry. It is necessary to remove dirt and any residues of previous milling job.

b) Assemble it on sturdy table. Adjust burr tightness. Place the sugar in mill cone and start grinding. Repeat this process until you are satisfied with the particle size. Tighten the burr for even finer ground.

This was the result I got after five passes.

brown sugar after milling

And this was the original form before milling.

brown sugar crystal before milling

Manual mill is recommended for the process. Electric powered mill generates too much heat that can melt sugar. We want powdered sugar, not syrup. Slow motor speed and burr cooling mechanism might solve the problem.

Electric blenders might as well melt the sugar. On the other hand, slow blade rotation will not accomplish anything.

Why Do We Hate Using Brown Sugar?


We have been using this white sugar ever since I was a kid. We use sugar in coffee, ice tea, fruit juices and desserts. Most of the commercially available products use this kind of sugar.

Other sugar and sugar substitute are available, like brown sugar, muscovado, coconut sugar, kaong sugar, aspartame, honey and stevia. By the way, stevia is a sweet herb.

Why do we hate using brown sugar?

1. Using white sugar is a tradition. A custom that is pass through generations.

2. Brown sugar looks ugly. White sugar is more pleasant looking.

3. Imparts color to food. Imagine milk, fruit salad and guyabano juice sweetend with white sugar.All of this will have a brownish appearance.

4. Dirty or have impurities. From time to time I encounter small pieces of sugar cane stalk. I even find small stones and insects. Brown sugar is similar to crude oil, a mixture of many components. I remember drinking a palamig with a red ant. How disgusting!

5. Tastes sour. It makes my favorite cup of tea sour. Refining purifies it, removing any impurities, acidity and color.

Please share your opinions!