Corn syrup is a kind of sweetener that is commonly used in popular desserts and beverages. Corn syrup is viscous in nature and is made from the naturally occurring sugar in corn, also known as maize in some parts of the world. Corn syrup is used in confectionery, baked goods, jams, and jellies.
High fructose corn syrup is different from corn syrup; it is a sweeter substance. In the United States, corn syrup is commonly known as glucose syrup since the latter is commonly made from corn starch.
What does corn syrup taste like? There are two kinds of corn syrup: light corn syrup and dark corn syrup. Light corn syrup is mildly sweet, with a vanilla flavor. Dark corn syrup has a deep, richer sweetness than light corn syrup, with a caramel flavor.
Light corn syrup is more preferred for cooking than baking. The dark corn syrup has molasses, and its caramel flavor is sometimes sought after in baked goods. Corn syrup is famous in the baking industry, and both dark and light can be used interchangeably depending on your preference.
Nutritional Benefits of Corn Syrup
Everyone loves sugar because it is sweet; the same goes for corn syrup. Like other refined sweeteners, corn syrup is a source of empty calories. It contains carbohydrates, vitamin B1, zinc, sodium, and selenium.
In small amounts, corn syrup is great in your food. But in excessive amounts, corn syrup could cause serious health issues. Overeating corn syrup can have some nasty side effects.
Too much corn syrup can cause cardiovascular complications. It puts significant stress on bodily functions, and the organs in the body have to keep up with the unnatural dose of fructose introduced into the body.
Studies have shown that people who get 17 to 25 percent of their daily dosage of calories from sugar have a higher risk of dying from heart-related diseases. Reducing the amount of corn syrup in your diet can help increase your life expectancy by a long stretch.
We all love sweet things because they can regulate our moods. Give a kid something sweet, and their face will light up immediately. But sweet foods can get addictive, and we start to depend on them for regulating moods and satisfying cravings. Having a diet that’s rich in sweet things can lead to obesity. If you want to lose weight, probably cut down your intake of corn syrup and other refined sweeteners like it.
Excessive corn syrup can seriously affect the liver, causing it to fail. The liver processes all the sweet food and drinks we take; too much sweetness gets it worked up, and it can fail.
Too much corn syrup can also be linked to causing dementia. It can affect the brain and obstruct memories, which isn’t good for anyone in the long run.
Corn syrup makes a great addition to food, but only in moderate quantities.
Culinary Uses of Corn Syrup
Corn syrup has found its way into many things. You can use it in cereals, crackers, flavored yogurts, cookies, juice, beers, vegetables, canned fruits. It can preserve meats or enhance the flavor of dairy products, bakery fillings, and beverages.
Large-scale manufacturers use corn syrup, adding it to baked goods, soft drinks, and condiments like jam and jellies.
Corn syrup can also be used in sugar pies. It helps create a smooth texture by preventing the formation of sugar crystals in sugar pies like chess pies, pecan tassies, sorbets, and homemade ice creams. In special cases, manufacturers use corn syrup as a humectant.
As a humectant, corn syrup works as a preservative that helps to retain moisture in foods and keep them from drying out.
What is the Origin of Corn Syrup? Where Can You Procure it?
Corn syrup is super easy to make. The producers mix cornstarch, which comes from the endosperm of kernels, with water. Then, they introduce enzymes. Corn syrup is a result of amylase enzyme activity, which initiates hydrolysis, the conversion of starch into sugar.
As the cornstarch and water mixture is exposed to the enzymes, the cornstarch breaks up into polymers known as Oligosaccharides. Then, when glucoamylase is introduced to the mixture, you get glucose molecules. The longer the process, the denser the syrup and the sweeter it becomes.
Corn syrup can be easily procured from grocery stores near wherever you live. It will most likely be found in the baking aisle next to other cooking syrups, sugars, and sweeteners. Some stores will stock corn syrup in the breakfast aisle, next to maple syrup or hot cereals.
Does Corn Syrup Taste Like Honey?
Corn syrup has the consistency of honey and has that light golden color. Its flavor is also somewhat similar to honey. It is thick, sticky, and will pass for honey in most recipes.
Unlike honey, corn syrup comes from corn, not bees. Honey doesn’t exactly taste like corn syrup; while their textures might be similar, honey is thicker, sticker, and sweeter than corn syrup.
Facts You Don’t Know About Corn Syrup
- The process of making corn syrup was invented by a German chemist, Gottlieb Kirchhoff. He invented the process in 1811.
- Corn syrup is different from high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). Most of the glucose is turned into fructose by using the enzyme D-xylose isomerase, making it a sweeter substance.