From the Department of Substitutes: It’s the time of year for gingerbread. I’m a fan of Pfefferkuchen, and don’t even get me started on Swedish Pepparkakor; but a big tray of hot American-style gingerbread is hard to beat. Only trouble is, you need molasses.
I’ve read here and there on line that Goldsaft makes a marvelous substitute. You’ll typically see this in yellow containers in the honey section of the grocery store, produced by a company called Grafshafter; it’s a cooked and concentrated sugar beet syrup, often used straight on bread instead of butter, or in baking as a sweetener. So I gave it a try, using the regular version, rather than the Karamell (a different mixture of fruit sugar, grape sugar, and sucrose).
The stuff itself is very molasses-y in texture, smooth and thick and very sweet. Very, very sweet. But it doesn’t have quite the burnt caramelized taste that I’m used to. Without any guidance, I used a one-for-one substitution ratio for the molasses in this gingerbread recipe here, which wound up being more Goldsaft than I actually had in the container I’d bought; so I filled in with honey.
The verdict? I don’t buy it as a perfect substitute. The gingerbread I made had, in my opinion, a sickly-sweet aftertaste that didn’t match what I was looking for. The Goldsaft was a slightly wrong kind of sweet. But that’s just one opinion. Several other people that tried the outcome said they liked it, although granting that it didn’t quite taste like gingerbread should.
At an Arabian deli the other day, I spied different types of molasses made from grapes and carob. Maybe next time I’ll give those a try.
Any readers that have recommendations for what to do with Goldsaft, let us know in the comments section.