Also called simple syrup, gomme syrup and sirop de gomme, sugar syrup is a solution of sugar and water that is cooked over low heat until clear, then boiled for a minute or so. Sugar syrup can be made in various densities: thin (3 parts water to 1 part sugar), medium (2 parts water to 1 part sugar) and heavy (equal parts water and sugar). Depending on the thickness, sugar syrups have various uses including soaking cakes (such as babas), glazing baked goods, poaching or preserving fruit, and adding to frostings. Sugar syrups are the basis for most candies and can be flavored with a variety of extracts, liqueurs, etc.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.