Sorghum is often called molasses, but the two syrups are very different. Sorghum syrup is made from sorghum cane, which grows in North Carolina, whereas “molasses” comes from sugarcane or sugar beets, neither of which is well suited for the state’s climate.
This sweetener has a number of nutritional benefits. One tablespoon of sorghum syrup supplies all of an average adult’s daily potassium needs. It’s also high in antioxidants. One tablespoon contains 300 mg of protein, 30 mg of calcium, 20 mg of magnesium and 11 mg of phosphorus. In fact, it is 100 percent natural and contains no chemical additives of any kind, according to the National Sweet Sorghum Producers & Processors Association. (They recommend looking for the “Sweet Sorghum” logo to ensure you’re purchasing 100 percent pure sweet sorghum.)
Store sorghum as you would honey, at room temperature. If it begins to crystallize, put it in a pan of warm water or microwave it. You can substitute sorghum for honey in recipes that don’t use baking powder. When using sorghum in place of sugar, use one-third more sorghum than the amount of sugar called for in the recipe and decrease the amount of liquids by one-third. When using sorghum instead of molasses, use an equal amount of sorghum but cut the amount of sugar, since sorghum is sweeter than molasses.
Find recipes for Sorghum Ice Cream and Bacon Sorghum Cornmeal Sandies at ncfieldfamily.org/sorghum.
– Nancy Henderson