Although I only occasionally eat sorghum molasses, I’m sure that I would have learned how to make it if I had grown up on a farm. It was syrup that my father grew up eating regularly, and throughout adulthood he ate it as part of his daily supper -- only his was bought in a store.
Sorghum molasses is a rich, brown, sweet, thick syrup. Enjoying it with hot biscuits at breakfast is a tradition in the South. Sorghum molasses is also used on pancakes and hot cereals such as grits, and the syrup can be used as a sweetener in baking and cooking. Because most sorghum varieties are heat-tolerant, they once were very important for poor and rural people. Many Southerners grew up with sorghum as a sweetener when refined sugar was not readily available or affordable.
|Impurities are skimmed off the juice|
during boiling as it becomes concentrated.
|Sign at the farm entrance|
|The roller mill is typically operated |
by animal power (mule or horse).
|Stalks leaving the roller mill|
have little juice remaining.
Note: An earlier version of post was published on the blog NCFOOD by the North Carolina Folklife Institute on Jan. 11, 2013. Components of the original post included in this one, which has been modified by minor edits and updates, are reprinted by permission from the North Carolina Folkife Institute.