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I have found the same thing with tico sugar. Especially the brown sugar. There just isn't much liquid in the batter to dissolve the sugar. There is some water from the eggs but it is not much. I don't have an Alto Mercado near me so I usually stick with the tico sugar. You really need to mix the batter a lot to help dissolve the sugars, A stand mixer would be great for this but I don't have one. =( I just mix a lot and then mix some more and leave the batter in the fridge overnight. My cookies turn out okay.

 

I have a stand mixer and it really didn't help a lot in this situation. I have a suggestion: First of all with the white sugar, put it in a food processor to refine it a bit, or maybe you can find the refined white sugar in your supermarket. I think the brand is Maria. Much finer crystals. Then for the brown sugar, take the refined white sugar and add molasses to it. That is exactly how brown sugar (not Tico style) is made. Here are the proportions: 1 pound white sugar to 3 oz. by weight of molasses. Mix in food processor until completely incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl if necessary. People tell me that you can find molasses (melaza) at ferias and central mercados.

 

If it works let me know and I might try it myself. lol Just kidding. It should be foolproof. This recipe comes from Alton Brown on the Food Network. It can also be found through Google.

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Oh, mama mia, I just made toffee bar cookies to give to a neighbor, and using Mark's trick of moving the oven rack up to the next level and adding a little extra flour (recipe called for 2 c, and the dough seemed too damp, so I added maybe another 3T), they turned out great. I have a gas oven and did turn them around a little more than halfway through the cooking time. Used Tico-type brown sugar, and, yes, the dough was grainy, but the cookies seemed fine.

 

regards,

Gayle

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Ohh, toffee bar cookies!!! Yum!

 

I have noticed the coarseness of the white sugar, so I whiz it in the magic bullet when I'm looking for something finer (or to make powdered sugar). It doesn't really bother me anymore, except when I use it in drinks, so I make simple syrup for that.

 

I'm so jealous of you all that have Auto Mercado handy! Where we live the best we can hope for is Maxi Pali. The last bag of Gold Medal flour I bought there a week ago had weevils in it when I opened it yesterday - and it was kept unopened in a big tupperware! Hubby said, can't you just sift them out??? Eeeewwww! He would NEVER have said that in California!!! :unsure:

 

Ok, don't want to sound like a total grouch. I must say we eat REALLY well here, and the plusses far outweigh the minuses.

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I use the Doña Maria sugar, too, to make simple syrup for beverages. It is really white-loking until I mix it down with the water and heat it then it turns quite yellowish.

 

Works fine , though. And I find a few tiny black flecks/flakes in the syrup after it is cooled off. Not sure where those come from but they're always in there and I guess it's better than if they were weevils!

 

Oh well, así es tiquicia.

 

Cheers!

 

Paul M.

==

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A bit off topic, but have you noticed that all the commonly sold salt here has iodine AND flouride? More than a few people have told me that the flouride is there to dumb-down the population and keep them servient. Not being much of a consipiracy buff, I pooh-pooh the notion. But I looked it up and it can have that effect. Personally, I think it's the government's attempt to provide flouride to the kids because there is no flouridated water supply. We have switched over to a sea salt to escape. Opinions???

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... And I find a few tiny black flecks/flakes in the syrup after it is cooled off. Not sure where those come from but they're always in there and I guess it's better than if they were weevils!

 

Maybe those tiny black flecks/flakes are weevil poop! LOL/YUCK!

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A bit off topic, but have you noticed that all the commonly sold salt here has iodine AND flouride? More than a few people have told me that the flouride is there to dumb-down the population and keep them servient. Not being much of a consipiracy buff, I pooh-pooh the notion. But I looked it up and it can have that effect. Personally, I think it's the government's attempt to provide flouride to the kids because there is no flouridated water supply. We have switched over to a sea salt to escape. Opinions???

 

Hi CRgirl,

 

Don't know about flouride "dumbing-down the population" but I DO KNOW that processed salt -regular table salt - is NOT good for our health. Salt gets a bad rap because of this. ACTUALLY, the body NEEDS salt but it needs unrefined, natural salt which contains the minerals essential to the functioning of our bodies.

 

You're wise to switch to sea salt! It's not SALT, but rather processed, table salt that elevates blood pressure. Unrefined, natural sea salt actually lowers blood pressure. The water retention and bloating experienced with table salt does not occur with unrefined sea salt.

 

But as with any product there are different qualities. I have been using the brand CelticSea Salt for over a year and my blood pressure has gone down. The taste is fantastic too! If you put some on your tongue it has a great salt taste but doesn't make you pucker like regular table salt will do.

 

Glad you're switching from table salt!

 

Darlene

Edited by demgems

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I didn't know that, Darlene! Back in the states we used sea salt, but it's so expensive here. I guess it's one of those things that I'll have to mule back from the States or ask visitors to bring. Do you buy the Celtic Sea Salt here in CR???

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Oh no; unfortunately I'm still stateside! As we say down (or up) here, "If ... and the creek don't rise" I hope to be there by January 2014.

 

I buy the Celtic sea salt at Whole Foods here in New Orleans but I believe HEBs and Trader Joes carry it in other parts of the U.S. (Another quality brand is Redmond's real salt. Some brands might contain mercury or other toxic heavy metals.) I bought my initial supply online from SelinaNaturally.com so if nothing else you could order it from there and have someone bring it to you. I pay about $5 for a 1# bag of the "Light Grey Celtic Vital Mineral Blend." It's a very course blend; I like it better than the finely ground salt. I'm not a heavy salt user so it lasts around 2 to 3 months.

 

Just curious, what brand of sea salt are you finding in CR? Like I said, not all brands are created equal.

 

By the way, if you google it you will find a mixed bag of opinions. I adhere to the belief that NONE of the processed foods are good for me. I've eliminated almost all processed foods from my diet and if the state of Louisiana would allow it I'd buy raw milk too!

 

Speaking of milk .. I guess that sort of brings us back to the main topic ... a glass of cold milk would go good with all those cookies y'all are baking! Yum!

 

dem

Edited by demgems

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We use the Nacarina harina de trigo and it seems to work as well as the Gold Medal.

 

Oh, and you can find sea salt at MalWart, and cheap grinders for a finer grain are available too.

 

Dana

Edited by DanaJ

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We use the Nacarina harina de trigo and it seems to work as well as the Gold Medal.

 

Oh, and you can find sea salt at MalWart, and cheap grinders for a finer grain are available too.

 

Interesting Dana. Does the WalMart sea salt packaging indicate whether there are fluorides or iodizing in it?

 

Just curious, as others have remarked that sea salt sold inside CR is usually fluoridated.

 

I would be nice to discover that WalMart is offering sea salt (or any salt, for that matter) without either of those additives.

 

Paul M.

==

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Interesting Dana. Does the WalMart sea salt packaging indicate whether there are fluorides or iodizing in it?

 

Just curious, as others have remarked that sea salt sold inside CR is usually fluoridated.

 

I would be nice to discover that WalMart is offering sea salt (or any salt, for that matter) without either of those additives.

 

Paul M.

==

 

Paul, it has been sooo long since we last bought some, and we tossed the packaging when we filled the grinder. But I believe it was labled as 'Pure'.

Next time we go I will look, but it may be awhile.

 

BTW: Has anybody else had problem with whipping crema dulce? Mine has separated into butter the last time I tried whipping it.

Is there something I am doing wrong?

 

Dana

Edited by DanaJ

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Paul, it has been sooo long since we last bought some, and we tossed the packaging when we filled the grinder. But I believe it was labled as 'Pure'.

Next time we go I will look, but it may be awhile.

 

BTW: Has anybody else had problem with whipping crema dulce? Mine has separated into butter the last time I tried whipping it.

Is there something I am doing wrong?

 

Dana,

 

Jacques Pepin on one of his recent cooking programs explained why this happens sometimes and it seems to have something to do with how much air you whip into it and/or for how long you whip it. But I can't remember exactly which.

 

Maybe snooping online on his website will reveal an explaination.

 

HTH

 

Paul M.

==

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There are various sea salts available here. I saw several at AutoMercado in Multiplaza last week but don't remember the names. Here at the beach I can easily find Roland brand, but too expensive. Because I won't buy it, I've never noticed if it's flouridated but I'll check next time I'm in the store. A few weeks ago we bought 450 g of Sal Marina "La Serenita" brand at a specialty store "Lotus" in San Isidro de General. It was only 850 colones and the bag says "con un alto contenido de yodo natural", translated: with a high content of natural iodine. But NO flouride!!! However, it's fine grained, not coarse. There's a telefax number on the front label, 2298-2420 if you want to fax and find where they sell it.

 

The crema dulce is hit and miss. I've found that if you chill it and the bowl, it whips up really fast. Overbeat and you have butter...

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