To create molasses:
1. Sugarcane is washed.
2. Cane passes through rollers and juice is collected.
3. Juice is allowed to settle and solids go to the bottom.
4. Pump the cleared juice to the boiler.
5. Juice boils until crystals start forming.
6. Crystals are removed. This is raw sugar. What’s left is molasses.
7. As the molasses is cooked, it goes from grade A to grade D–blackstrap.
As the ash content of the molasses goes up, the amount of fermentable sugars goes down. The lower the grade of molasses, the more nutrients and yeast must be added to make fermentation happen. Don Pancho uses grade A molasses.