Has it happened to you, that you wanted to bake a cake, where the recipe demanded caster sugar and you only had powdered sugar at home. This is when you wanted to know, whether you can replace caster sugar for powdered sugar. Well you are not the only one. There are a lot of people, who have faced such a situation. Therefore, caster sugar is often pitched against powdered sugar. How are both these types of sugar different than the other. Can they be used as substitutes for one another. Which of them is the confectioners sugar? The answers to these questions will ensure you are not at loss, when you are making a special dish for your loved ones.
To understand the difference between caster sugar and powdered sugar, we will first see what is caster sugar and what is powdered sugar and then turn to the difference.
What is the Difference Between Caster Sugar and Powdered Sugar?
If one has to take a look at different recipes, in the list of ingredients you will come across either caster sugar or powdered sugar included. May be there are some recipes, which demand the use of both caster as well as powdered sugar.
What is Caster Sugar?
Caster sugar has fine granules of sugar, which have quick dissolving properties. This is the sugar, which is often used by bartenders and bakers. It is also spelled as castor sugar. The packets of this sugar are often labeled as 'superfine sugar'. It is available in both refined as well as unrefined form.
Caster sugar substitute can be ground conventional sugar. Caster sugar texture lies between the texture of conventional sugar and confectioner's sugar. Since it is finely ground, it dissolves easily. This sugar is often used to make meringues. It is also used in various beverages, so that there is no layer of undissolved crystals at the bottom of the container.
What is Powdered Sugar?
Powdered sugar is very fine sugar, which is known as confectioner's sugar, frosting or icing sugar. It is known as 10X or 4X sugar as well. This food additives is also used by the bakers. It is obtained from granulated sugar. Often cornstarch is added to this sugar, which ensures that the sugar does not clump. 14X is the highest grind of this sugar.
The higher the grind of the sugar, the quicker the sugar dissolves. Therefore, it is best suited for whipping cream. It is also available in the fine and super fine versions. In this classification , there is reference made to the grain size of the sugar. Although it contains cornstarch, the sugar is often sifted to remove any lumps from the sugar.
Caster Sugar Vs. Powdered Sugar
Now that you know what is caster sugar and what is powdered sugar, we will turn to the difference between the two. The caster sugar is very fine sugar, which is also known as 'superfine' sugar. However, it is not as fine as powdered sugar to which cornstarch is added. Making powdered sugar at home is also possible. Combine about 1 cup of granulated sugar with 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and blend well, till you get sugar in powdered form. Keep the sugar aside, before you use it. Like powdered sugar, one can also make caster sugar at home. You will have to fine grind granulated sugar, without any additives. When you make caster sugar let the sugar sit in the blender for a 5 to 10 minutes before you open it, as it gives rise to sugar dust.
To settle the debate, the difference between both caster sugar and powdered sugar is that powdered sugar contains cornstarch, while caster sugar does not. At the same time, powdered sugar is finer as compared to caster sugar. Now that you know the difference, you will not be at loss, when you are cooking a special recipe.