Monday, February 14, 2005

Sunday Morning Hotcakes and Syrup

I rarely cook a full breakfast on Sunday morning. But a stack of hotcakes sounded good yesterday. With a fresh batch of brown sugar syrup sitting in the refrigerator, my son and I made traditional Karoly hotcakes (more later in the week).

Although I've prepared brown sugar syrup hundreds of times, I've always been put off by it's acidic aftertaste. So a few years ago, I added 1/4-cup corn syrup and several pats of unsalted butter to by recipe (dissolve 2 cups brown sugar in 1 cup boiling water and flavor with maple flavoring).

The result impressed me. The syrup had a distinct brown sugar flavor without the aftertaste. It was much smoother and had a mild butter flavor.

A quick Google search led me to a recipe by Pam Anderson, author of How to Cook Without a Book and CookSmart, that had promise. It delievered a sweet syrup with smooth flavor. The syrup thickened naturally without cornstarch.

This is where the writer says, "The syrup has a reddish hue with yellow under tones when drizzled from a spoon."


Some things are just too easy to make at home, including hotcakes and brown sugar syrup. I figure, why buy the bottled stuff when you can easily produce quality syrup at home. The original recipe said to simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. I find that it takes at least 30 minutes to reduce the volume by one-half.

1 cup brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup corn syrup
2 cups water
3 tablespoons unsalted butter

In a medium saucepan, bring the sugars, corn syrup and water to a boil. Reduce heat to a vigorous simmer until thickened to a syrupy consistency, about 30 minutes. Stir in butter. Let cool slightly. Store in the refrigerator for up to one month.


  1. Steve,
    Enjoy your information, recipes and the thoughts of the day.
    I have been making syrup at home for years. The family loves it. I am anxious to try your idea of adding corn syrup.
    I also add a teaspoon of vanilla in mine.
    Thanks for all the info.

  2. Thanks for your input, Lynn. Let us know how it goes. I sometimes simmer the syrup for up to an hour to make extra thick. The only problem is that it gets extremely sticky mwhen cold. But it's good.