Rum is a flavourful spirit made by fermenting and distilling sugar cane or molasses. It is one of the varied and diverse spirits in the world due to the seemingly endless production methods.
Rum has a long and dark history as it most likely originated in the Caribbean in the early 16th century on colonial sugar plantations. When sugar cane is refined into sugar you are left with a lot of molasses which for a long time was considered a waste product. It was then discovered that molasses could be fermented.
Types of rum
Light – Light or ’White’ rum is not aged for very long. Because of the short ageing process, the endproduct is colourless and is sometimes even filtered. Light rum has a smooth and slightly sweet taste making it a great addition to fruity drinks.
The largest producers of light rum are Cuba, Panama, Guatemala, Puerto Rico, and Colombia.
Dark – Dark rum gets its colour from the ageing process. It is aged in burnt wood barrels, giving is a stronger, fuller flavour. It sometimes has molasses or burnt sugar added. It can be drunk straight or added to drinks and it can be used in cooking.
The largest producers of light rum are Jamaica, Haiti, and Martinique, as well as Nicaragua and Guatemala.
Spiced – Spiced rum is dark rum with the addition of flavours like vanilla, cloves, ginger nutmeg, star anise, and cinnamon. Fruit like lime, orange and even pineapple are also sometimes used to flavour rum!
Rum based cocktails
Rum is super versatile and forms the basis of many of the worlds most loved cocktails, such as Daiquiri, Rum Punch Dark’N’Storny, Old Fashioned, Mojito, Pina Colada, Rum Runner and Cuba Libre (A fancy name for a rum and coke with a slice of lime)
You can also try using some dark rum in a hot toddy instead of whisky!
Rum in cooking
As mentioned before dark rum tends to be used more in cooking than white rum. This is because of its deeper, stronger flavour. It works well in both sweet and savoury dishes.
Savoury – its a great addition to barbecue sauces, marinades and glazes for meat and vegetables. It is also really nice with seafood.
Sweet – Dark rum is used in many classic desserts like Tiramisu, Rum baba, Rum Cake and Rum Raisin ice cream.
Rum nutritional value
Like all alcoholic beverages, please drink responsibly and in moderation, especially considering the high alcohol content. Most rum has an alcohol percentage between 70% and 77% but some can reach up to 81%. There are about 231 calories per 100ml of rum.
Rum is also gluten-free and vegan friendly.