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Old 01-23-2008, 03:46 PM   #1
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Size of sugar grain (powder vs granulated): does it really matter?

I'm going to follow this funky recipe: http://www.discusscooking.com/forums...ies-39478.html

I note that it calls for granulated sugar and I want to suggest the idea that substituting all granulated sugar for any powdered sugar should make no difference. My suggestion is, if it's the same stuff, it's all gonna dissolve in exactly the same way, except that the granulated might take a little longer and a bit more stirring. I wanted to see if someone could explain why recipes call for powdered sugar if it's going to be dissolved?


Also, I don't have vanilla, so that's not going in, and I don't have an oven so I'm going to grill them :)

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Old 01-23-2008, 03:50 PM   #2
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Think about the size of the crystal or grain. If you pack smaller molecules together you will get more in a cup than you would of larger sized molecules. Make sense?
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Old 01-23-2008, 03:55 PM   #3
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Think about the size of the crystal or grain. If you pack smaller molecules together you will get more in a cup than you would of larger sized molecules. Make sense?
Is that the only relevance? If the ingredients were listed in grams, they'd be easily substitutable. I don't think the outcome of the recipe will be too different for want of a few grams of sugar... especially given all the other variability.
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Old 01-23-2008, 04:07 PM   #4
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You aren't melting the sugar. You are creaming it into the mixture. So 1 cup of powdered sugar will make things vastly sweeter than 1 cup of granulated. If you have a food processor, toss some granulated sugar in there and buzz it til you have a cup.
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Old 01-23-2008, 04:09 PM   #5
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Also, confectioner's (powdered) sugar contains cornstarch (cornflour). So if you could eliminate the cornstarch and measure by weight, it would be OK, except for the fact that the grain size of the granulated sugar is key to the creaming process in the first step.

The lack of vanilla will have a major impact on the flavor of the cookie and they very well may burn in the grill.

Overall, sounds like a great project.
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Old 01-23-2008, 04:13 PM   #6
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Peanut Butter cookies without vanilla?!?!?!?
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Old 01-23-2008, 05:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seans_potato_business View Post
Is that the only relevance? If the ingredients were listed in grams, they'd be easily substitutable. I don't think the outcome of the recipe will be too different for want of a few grams of sugar... especially given all the other variability.


Baking is way different than cooking. A few grams can, and sometimes WILL make the difference between success and failure in a recipe. If you're baking, my advice is to follow the recipe as precisely as possible. Cookies aren't an incredibly complex baking undertaking, however changing the ingredients can easily affect the cookies flavor texture, cooking time, how far they spread out on your baking sheet, etc.

Also, as stated, powdered sugar also contains corn starch, and is not simply powdered granulated sugar.
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Old 01-23-2008, 05:25 PM   #8
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There is only about 1 tbsp of cornstarch in 1 cup of powdered sugar. So, just add that in accordingly if you wish. I have never done that when I had to buzz up some granulated sugar to sub in though.
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Old 01-23-2008, 06:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seans_potato_business View Post
I'm going to follow this funky recipe: http://www.discusscooking.com/forums...ies-39478.html

I note that it calls for granulated sugar and I want to suggest the idea that substituting all granulated sugar for any powdered sugar should make no difference. My suggestion is, if it's the same stuff, it's all gonna dissolve in exactly the same way, except that the granulated might take a little longer and a bit more stirring. I wanted to see if someone could explain why recipes call for powdered sugar if it's going to be dissolved?


Also, I don't have vanilla, so that's not going in, and I don't have an oven so I'm going to grill them :)
What type of grill are you going to use? I have used honey roasted PB for these cookies so you can add some honey if you don't have vanilla. If you have cereal like cinnamon crunch or even frosted cornflakes you can crush them and add it as though it were nuts or raisins. World Famous Cookie Recipe calls for crushed plain cornflakes.
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Old 01-23-2008, 06:59 PM   #10
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Thanks for the replies, everyone.

The grill is electric. You set it to a certain temperature. It's integrated into the microwave and I suspect but don't know for certain, that the microwave is employed as well... Anyway, I could set it slightly lower to prevent burning.
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