If you’ve ever attempted to make an authentic Caribbean Christmas cake you’ll know what browning is. However, since it’s available bottled most don’t know how to make it at home, the old-fashioned way. Basically browning is burnt sugar and water. It’s used to add deep colour to the traditional Christmas rum cake, also called Black Cake on most islands. Along with the soaked fruit it’s what makes Black Cake dark. It can be also be used to darken gravy, as a result, the store-bought browning has salt in it. So, when using bottled browning in a cake recipe you may find it necessary to adjust the amount of salt.
I was contacted by Tiziana who lives in Sicily, Italy. She asked if I could make homemade browning video because it’s not something she can find where she lives. I thought that was a really good idea because it’s easy to make yourself. You’ll find that it tastes bitter, which is exactly how it should taste, and helps to balance the sweetness of the cake.
This recipe makes 1/3 of a cup of browning, which is more than you need. Store it a bottle and refrigerate.