Compressed discs of unrefined sugar like piloncillo and palm sugar add a distinctive depth to dishes, but they are also extremely difficult to break apart. The LA Times Test Kitchen shared a tip for breaking up these sugar blocks without having to resort to a hammer.They use a box grater to break down the sugar before using it, a trick they say "works like magic" and is a lot less messy than taking a swing at the sugar with a hammer. Simple and ingenious!
We wonder if a microplane might also work for this. When grating hard items like certain cheeses, the microplane is the safer, easier choice for us — and our poor knuckles.
Anjali is a former private chef who is currently pursuing a graduate degree in nutrition, with plans to become a registered dietitian. She lives in Los Angeles. You can read more of her health-focused writing at Eat Your Greens.
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