An unrefined cane sugar from Mexico that is purchased in molded hard cones in two varieties: lighter (blanco) and darker (oscuro). The deeper the color, the more molasses flavor. The name piloncillo means little pylon which refers to the traditional cone shape in which the sugar is produced. The cone size varies from 3/4 ounce to as much as 9 ounces per cone.
Season: available year-round
How to select: Available in Latin grocery stores.
How to prepare: Piloncillo is very hard when compared to the brown sugar. Chop the piloncillo with a serrated knife.
Substitutions: 1 cup dark brown sugar plus a few teaspoons of molasses