Recipe Corner1/22/09

Sugars in our diet

Jan. 22, 2009

By Ginger Isham

Sugar is a carbohydrate made up of fructose and glucose so as to create sucrose. Sucrose is found naturally in plants and juices; when refined, it becomes bad for our diet. Our addiction to sugar creates health problems as well as problems for our immune system. Ingesting sugar feeds candida — a systemic fungal infection — creates mineral and vitamin deficiencies, adrenal fatigue, diabetes and obesity.

Even though we have decreased sucrose (table sugar) in our diet, we have increased the amount of fructose in the last 20 to 30 years. The use of high fructose corn syrup in our diet has at least tripled from 19 to 60 pounds per person per year since the 1980s. Honey is 1.5 times sweeter than sugar and also can feed candida and raise one’s blood sugar. Molasses is also not good for you and should be used sparingly. It is pure sugar with small amounts of vitamins and minerals added.

Grandmother’s gingerbread

1/2 cup shortening (I use oil)

1 egg

3/4 cup molasses

1 1/4 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

pinch of salt

1/2 cup milk

Cream shortening and add egg and molasses. Mix dry ingredients and add alternately with milk. Beat well and bake in an 8-inch, greased, square pan for 25 to 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve at room temperature with warm applesauce — homemade is best — or whipped cream lightly sweetened.

My gingerbread

1/2 cup shortening or oil

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg

2 1/2 cups flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

1/2 teaspoon cloves

pinch of salt

1 cup molasses

1 cup hot water

Melt shortening over low heat and remove and cool slightly. Stir in egg and sugar. Beat well. Combine dry ingredients and add alternately with molasses and water. Pour into a greased 9-inch square pan and bake at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes. When cool, frost with a butter cream icing and sprinkle coconut on top.

My family’s favorite topping is a lemon sauce, made by mixing 1 cup sugar and 2 tablespoons corn starch in a saucepan and stirring in 2 cups of water. Boil for 1 minute, then remove from heat and add 2 to 4 tablespoons butter and 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice. Stir and pour over individual servings.

Ginger Isham was the co-owner of Maple Grove Farm Bed & Breakfast in Williston, a fifth generation family farm on Oak Hill Road where she still lives.