Food 101: Simple Syrup
You may not need to use simple syrup super often, but it’s handy to have in your cooking arsenal. While the “simple” in simple syrup presumably refers to the fact that it’s pretty much the most basic syrup you can make, it is also incredibly simple to make. As I commented to Erik after making it for the pictures, this was probably the fastest thing I’ve ever made for a post.
Simple syrup is useful to keep on hand if you have cold beverages to sweeten. Because the sugar is already dissolved you don’t have to worry about it not doing so in your drink. Pretty much anything you want to sweeten that’s too cold for sugar to dissolve in is where simple syrup shines. Lemonade, iced tea, flavor infused water – all of these can get a kick of sweet from simply syrup. It’s also used a lot in the making of cocktails.
There isn’t really a recipe for simple syrup. It’s more like a formula. You can make as much or as little as you like as long as you keep the same ratio. This is really easy to do because the ratio is 1:1. One part sugar to one part water.
This time I made it I used ½ cup sugar and ½ cup water. If you want really sweet syrup you can up the ratio to 2:1, but the 1:1 ratio should get you through most applications.
All you need to do is dump the sugar and water in a pot.
Heat over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until all the sugar is dissolved. This should take 3-5 minutes.
Make sure not to overcook the syrup. If you do you’re going to start getting into candy making, which is fine if you want candy, but not if you want syrup. If your syrup starts to turn brown, you’ve gone too far and will need to start over.
Once your syrup is done, let it cool a bit and then transfer to a storage container. Ideally if you have a squeeze bottle to keep it in that’s the most convenient way to store it. I did not have one, so I just put it in a jar.
Once it’s cooled to room temperature you can put it in the fridge. It’ll keep in the fridge for at least a month.