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Coconut sugar: properties, how to use it and all the information on thecoconut palm sugar. Glycemic index and nutritional values.
Let's start with the simplest thing, what is coconut sugar.Thecoconut sugar, also commonly known ascoconut palm sugar, is a substance obtained fromlymphof the coconut palm. In particular, we are talking about the sap extracted from the inflorescences.
We Italians also have a natural sweetener extracted from the sap of a tree, it is the Manna delle Mannoie with which delicious typical recipes are prepared.
Originally, itpalm sugarwas extracted from thePalma Palmira(to be clear, the date palm). With the spread of natural sweeteners, sugar is also produced from the sap of the Arenga pinnata, the coconut palm and other palm species.
In Thailand, a distinction is made between palm sugar and coconut sugar. The term palm sugar identifies the sugar extracted from the sap obtained from the trunk of the tree while the term coconut sugar identifies the natural sugar obtained from the inflorescences.
Coconut sugar comes in the form of crystals, granules, or in liquid form. The raw sap extracted from the plant is translucent and contains about 80% water. For the production ofcoconut palm sugarthat we find on the market, the sap is dried in large containers. At first, palm sugar has a syrupy consistency and then, with complete dehydration, takes the form of the crystalline we know. On the market, however, we also find palm sugar in soft paste or in the form of syrup.
Coconut sugar, flavor
Thecoconut palm sugarit tastes almost as sweet as brown sugar, it is distinguished by a light caramel note. Since coconut sugar is morenatural(i.e. it is less processed) than refined white sugar, the color, texture and even flavor may vary slightly based on the harvest season and the variety of coconut palm used.
Coconut sugar, glycemic index and diabetes
Let's start fromglycemic index, very important data for those who have problems withdiabetes. In Italy there are no sources that can indicate with certainty theglycemic indexof thecoconut sugar, however, referring to the Philippine Food Authority, the glycemic index of this semi-processed product should be 35. However, other sources report aglycemic indexequal to 54.
Coconut sugar, nutritional properties
Thecoconut palm sugarprovides 16 calories for each teaspoon and cannot boast an appealing nutritional profile. It does not provide many essential nutrients except for potassium. 100 grams of coconut palm sugar (about 25 teaspoons) cover 25% of the daily potassium requirement.
The main component of thecoconut palm sugarit is sucrose which represents from 70 to 79%. Sucrose is followed by other sugars such as glucose and fructose which account for 3 to 9%.
Coconut sugar, where to buy it
Thanks to coconut sugar it is possible to prepare a large number of recipes. Unfortunately, not all supermarkets are stocked enough to offer this natural sweetener. Luckily there is online buying!
On Amazon it is easy to find coconut sugar produced by different houses. Among those that offer it with the Bio brand (and at a reasonable price) we point out the Fior di Loto coconut sugar. We reported this product because the sap is extracted from untreated coconut palm flowers.
For all information, please refer to the Amazon page: sugar extracted from coconut palm flowers.
A pack of 500 grams can be purchased at a price of 6.35 euros with free shipping costs. How to use it? In many recipes or simply to sweeten tea, coffee or milk.