Isomalt or Splenda

Discussion in 'Professional Pastry Chefs' started by cakerookie, Sep 10, 2005.

  1. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    Hello
    Are these similiar in nature? People keep asking me all the time are they the same. I do not believe they are. Can someone help with this question. And also what would be a good substitue for them. Can food lacquer be made at home?

    Thanks
     
  2. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Of course not! Splenda is Sucralose, a high potency non-nutritive sweetener. Isomalt is a real sugar in the sugar alcohol family, derived from maltose, hence the name. Different melting points, different applications.

    What do you mean by food lacquer? You mean like a caramel glaze? Use Isomalt for that. Use Splenda for sweetening your coffee.
     
  3. cakerookie

    cakerookie

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    Kuan
    Hi, Thanks for clearing that up about the Splenda deal. The food lacquer I was referring to is what they spray or paint on finished sugar pieces to make them shine. I do not know if there is such an animal or not but I have read about people using it. Is there an edible lacquer type substance that can be used for this?

    Thanks Cakerookie
     
  4. m brown

    m brown

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    best to buy it.
    albert uster imports (best for hard to find pastry gear) has it and a few others.
    comes in a spray can or liquid for painting.
     
  5. cookieguy

    cookieguy

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    Kuan is right. Isomalt is one of many sugar alcohols. Others you might know are Erythritol, Sorbitol, Mannitol, Maltitol, Xylitol and Lactitol. In a formula they could be used in amounts similar to sugar. But they are very expensive compared to sugar, $1 to $3 a pound. Also, they have a funny side benefit called the "laxative effect." If you ever eat candies with Mannitol I suggest you stay very near a toilet. The least laxative effect is Maltitol. The sweetening effect for sugar alcohols ranges from about 30% to 90% that of sucrose (table sugar) depending on the type.

    Intense sweetners are another animal altogether. Sucralose (Splenda) is one. Aspartame (Equal) is another. Then there's Acesulfame K (Sunette) and Saccharin (Sweet 'n Low). Also Cyclamate, which was banned in the US but will be making a comeback.

    Intense sweetners' sweetening effect is anywhere from 200 to 800 times that of sucose (on a equal weight basis.) Others coming on the market go as high as 8000 times. When you use Splenda or Equal in a small packet you are not using pure intense sweetner. It is always cut with dextrose or maltodextrins. The amount of intense sweetner in the packet you could fit on the tip of a pin. Pure Sucralose costs about $150 a pound.

    Lately I see some large bags of some "Splenda" material in the supermarket for home baking. This is nothing more than very fluffy maltodextrin with a minute amount of intense sweetner going for a very high price. I wouldn't waste my time with it.