How to prepare simple Syrup

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Plain syrup

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups water.    
  • 1⅛ cup sugar.

Directions:
Heat water and sugar in a Magefesa saucepan. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat and let cool.

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Citrus syrup

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups water.    
  • 1⅛ cup sugar.
  • ⅓ cup citrus juice.

Directions:
Proceed the same way as with the plain syrup. Once cold, stir in the citrus juice of your choice.

Liqueur syrup

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups water.    
  • 1⅛ cup sugar.
  • 2 teaspoons liqueur. (Rum, Brandy, fruit liqueur etc.)

Directions:
Proceed the same way as with the plain syrup. When it starts boiling, add the liqueur, let it cook for a few seconds and remove from heat.

Coffee/ Tea Infused Syrup

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups water.    
  • 1⅛ cup sugar.    
  • 1¼ tablespoons infusion ingredient (Soluble coffee, chamomile tea, or any other herbal teas).

Directions:
Proceed the same way as with the plain syrup. When it starts boiling, let the selected ingredient infuse for 4 minutes. Strain and cool.

Flavored syrup

Ingredients:

  • 2⅓ cups water.    
  • 1⅛ cup sugar.    
  • Spices, citrus zest, cinnamon, vanilla, etc.

Directions:
Place water together with the ingredients you have chosen to flavor the syrup with in a Magefesa saucepan. Bring to a boil, simmer for about 3 minutes. Add sugar and wait for the mixture to come to a boil. Remove from heat, strain and cool.    These syrups are used to wet pound cakes, cakes, pastries or to prepare fruit sauces, meringues, sorbets and tocino de cielo, a preparation made with egg yolks and sugar.

Occasionally the water /sugar ratio in the recipe will vary depending on the density of the syrup we are preparing. Density is measured in Baume degrees, on a scale that goes from 10° to 33º using a device called hydrometer. If we don’t have a hydrometer we can use the following information as a rough guideline: 1 degree Baume is equivalent to 25 gr. (2 tablespoons) of sugar dissolved in 1 liter (4 cups) of water, so if you need a syrup to 10 ° Baume, all we´ll have to do is multiply the degrees by the grams of sugar, as in the following example 10 ° x 25 Gr. = 250 gr. sugar ( 1-1/4 cup) per liter (4 cups) of water.

From syrup to candy, we can distinguish different grades of syrups depending on the boiling points of the water-sugar solution:

  • Syrup: Obtained at a temperature of 100°C (212°F), when the water boils.
  • Balloon stage: Obtained at a boiling point of 109 °C (230°F). If we introduce a skimmer in the container with the mixture and blow through the holes, bubbles or balloons will form.
  • Thread stage: Obtained at a boiling point of 112 °C (235°F). If we dip the index finger in cold water, take a bit of syrup with it and dip it again into cold water it will form a weak short thread between the thumb and index fingers.
  • Soft-Ball Stage: Obtained at a boiling point of 115 °C (240°F). Using the same technique we will observe how the syrup forms a soft ball between the fingers.
  • Hard-Ball stage:  Obtained at a boiling point of 119 °C (250°F). Using the same technique, the ball formed will feel hard to the touch .
  • Caramel: Obtained at a boiling point of 132 °C (270°F). From this point on we will continue with the testing using a spoon instead of our fingers. If you get a spoon in caramel and then in cold water it will form a layer that sticks to the teeth.
  • Hard candy: Obtained at a boiling point of 152 °C (305°F).Using the same technique,  the syrup will  form a hard  brittle layer.

At temperature above 215 ° C (400°F) caramel burns and becomes black.

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