Sucre à la crème literally means sugar cream, which just happens to be the component ingredients of this holiday dessert. It is essentially a maple fudge. Like fudge, sucre à la crème is made by mixing sugar (usually brown sugar and maple syrup), butter, and dairy (condensed milk or cream) together, heating the mixture to approximately 240F, and allowing to crystallize.
In the candy making trade, this means bringing the sugar mixture to the “soft-ball” stage. The softball stage is a temperature range from 235F to 245F. These are the temperatures when a heated and cooled sugar syrup forms a ball in cold water that flattens once removed.
According to wikipedia, sucre à la crème is similar to a confection called Talbet from Scotland. Like sucre à la crème, it is made from sugar, condensed milk, and butter. Unlike sucre à la crème, it is often flavoured with vanilla.
This past Christmas, I had the good fortune to try sucre à la crème for the first time. My cubicle neighbor dropped by my office with individually portioned boxes of sucre à la crème for sale to raise money for his daughter’s elementary school. To entice us to purchase a box, he offered a free sample. Rich, buttery, sweet, and distinctly tasting of caramel, I was immediately hooked and purchased a box. I then launched a search to find authentic recipes to make the confection myself.
With its Quebecois roots, the recipes I found were either written “en français” or roughly translated from French, so I had to clarify some of the ingredients and cooking directions with colleagues who had better grasps of French than I. My search eventually attracted the attention of one of the assistants, who found me a “quick and easy” recipe. Assuming that I would prefer a recipe in English, she ran the recipe through the AskJeeves.com translator. Lets just say that some things were lost in translation. Consequently, I ran the recipe through BabelFish and the results were also somewhat less than adequate. Both translations instructed me to cook with gasoline. One wanted me to use “bird brains.” The other wanted me to employ “microphone(microcomputing) waves.” Can someone please tell me what “fast cream” is?
Here is the original Recipe:
Sucre à la crème rapide
2 tasses de cassonade
2/3 de tasse de beurre (pas de margarine)
3/4 de tasse de lait Carnation (évaporé)
1 c. à thé d’essence d’érable
2 tasses de sucre à glacer
Dans un plat allant au four à micro ondes de 6 à 8 tasses ( format de la tasse) mettre les trois premiers ingrédients en prenant soin de faire fondre le beurre légèrement. Cuire à haute intensité 8 minutes en brassant toutes les 2 minutes, laisser refroidir 15 minutes, ajouter l’essence à la mixette rajouter le sucre à glacer prévoir un plat beurré car le sucre prendra presque instantanément.
Refroidir une heure ou deux.
Here is the translation from AskJeeves.com
Sucre with the fast cream
2 cups of soft brown sugar
2/3 of cup of butter ( no margarine)
3/4 of cup of milk Complexion (birdbrain)
1 c. in tea of gasoline(essence) of maple
2 cups of sugar to be frozen
In a flat(dish) going to the oven to microphone(microcomputing) waves from 6 to 8 cups
(size(format) of the cup) to put the first three ingredients by taking care of melting the
butter slightly. Cook in high intensity 8 minutes by brewing every 2 minutes, let cool 15
minutes, add the gasoline(essence) to the mixette add the sugar to freeze to foresee(plan) a
buttered flat(dish) because the sugar will set almost immediately.
Cool one hour or two.
Return in the index of receipts
Here is the translation from Babelfish
?a Cr sweetens? rapid
INGR?IENTS 2 cups of brown sugar
2/3 of butter cup (not of margarine)
3/4 of milk cup Complexion (?por?/font >
1 C? th?’ gasoline of?ble
2 sugar?lacer cups
In a dish going to the furnace?icro waves of 6? cups (format of the cup) to put the three
first ingr?ents by taking care to dissolve butter l?rement. To cook?haute intensit? minutes
by brewing every 2 minutes, to let cool 15 minutes, to add the gasoline?a mixette to add
sugar?lacer to pr?ir a dish beurr?ar sugar will take almost instantan?nt.
To cool one hour or two.
return?’ index of the receipts
What does this mean? Don’t translate recipes using automated tools. The somewhat literal results could be detrimental to your health…
For the record, cassonade is brown sugar. Essence d’érable, translated as gasoline by both AskJeeves and BabelFish, is Maple Sugar Extract.
In the end, I never found time to test this recipe or any of the others. However, the following is a trusted recipe from a colleague who uses it every Christmas to make sucre à la crème for her family:
- 1 tasse cassonade
- 1 tasse sucre
- 1 tasse crème (35%)
- 1 c à thé (5 mL) essence vanille
- 1 c à soupe (15 mL) de beurre
- 1/2 tasse noix (facultatif)
- 5 guimauves
- melanger cassonade, sucre, et crème dans un plat profond
- faire cuire à “Elevé” 11 minutes
- remuer 2 fois pendant la cuisson
- ajouter essence, beurre, vanille, et guimauve. fouettez jusqu’à épaississement
- ajouter les noix
- étalez dans un Moule beurré, decouper en carré et laissez refroidir