Visited a wholly traditional sugar cane farm in the Colombian Andes. Here was an artisanal process of harvesting the Andean sugar cane, milling it and then evaporating the liquid before moulding or pulverising the sugar cane juice into delicious raw sugar like nothing I have ever tasted before.
The stages of sounds you will hear:
- Cutting of the sugar cane.
- Starting an old Soviet era engine to power the mill.
- The whirring of the mill's cogs.
- Milling of the cane.
- Pouring the raw cane juice into the vats.
- The hammering of a tree (Balza) bark used in the boiling process to remove impurities.
- Adding the Balza tree bark syrup to the raw cane juice in the vats.
- The firing of the furnace below to boil the cane juice.
- Skimming of impurities from the cane juice.
- Boiling and mixing of the cane juice within the cooking vats.
- Testing for crystallisation by shattering a small cooled portion of the condensed cane juice.
- Cooling the boiling condensed cane juice by beating it in a wooden trough.
- Smoothing the gooey sugar into 500g moulds to cool off.