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Date Caramel, Three Ways

by on June 17, 2015
 

Last year, I discovered date caramel/ toffee thanks to santifood co. It quickly became my everything – spoonfuls in tea, spread on bread, with yogurt and on and on.

This discovery led me to make a spiced version that’s amazing – sweet, fragrant and full of flavour.

Like chai tea? Look no further.
Like sweet but not from sugar, sugar? Here you are.
Want a spread, with peanuts? Chocolate? I’ve got you covered.

Dates are very popular during Ramadan as the fruits to break fasts with, as recommended by the prophet. Some people eat them, drink them, add to recipes and the like. In Nigeria, wheelbarrows are piled high dates and tiger nuts, and store shelves are lined with thick, fat Saudit and Emirati dates.

While the imported dates are soft and sticky, the Nigerian ones are hard and dry.

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L: Soft, sticky imported dates; R – Nigerian dates, slim and hard

On to the date caramel/ toffee – a combination of dates, water and spices.

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You begin by pitting the dates. I’m sure you can find un-pitted ones but I doubt they’d be as delicious.

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If using Nigerian date, soak in tea or water till soft. Don’t discard the soaking water – you’ll use it later on to blend the ingredients..

Next is an array of spices. Lots of flavours go well but you have to use a deft hand lest you overpower the mix.

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One blender full later, and you’re done.

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Ready to ‘flavour, take 2’ – by way of groundnuts and chocolate.

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I ended up making three batches – a plain spiced one, one with peanuts (my favourite – halfway to peanut butter but spicier) and one with melted chocolate.

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I’ve been enjoying them on croffles, in tea and yogurt. I hope you enjoy it in more…

Date Caramel
A quick and easy 'raw caramel' made with dates, and spiced to create a complex spread and dip


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877 calories
228 g
2 g
4 g
6 g
2 g
308 g
157 g
201 g
0 g
1 g

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
308g

Amount Per Serving
Calories 877
Calories from Fat 32

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 4g
6%

Saturated Fat 2g
10%

Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 2mg
1%

Sodium 157mg
7%

Total Carbohydrates 228g
76%

Dietary Fiber 21g
83%

Sugars 201g
Protein 6g
Vitamin A
9%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
22%
Iron
18%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Ingredients
  1. 2 cups dates, pitted (softened by soaking in water or tea if hard)
  2. Pinch of cinnamon powder
  3. Pinch of ginger powder
  4. Pinch, black peppercorns
  5. Pinch, seeds of green cardamom pods
  6. Pinch of pink peppercorns
  7. Pinch of salt
Options
  1. Groundnuts
  2. Chocolate, melted
Instructions
  1. This is best done in batches. In a blender or food processor, combine 1 cup dates, spices and 1/2 cup water or soaking liquid
  2. Blitz till smooth 'caramel' is formed
  3. Repeat with other batch
  4. Refrigerate for weeks and use as a sweetener, drink, spread.
  5. I split my 'caramel' into 3 - one half stayed plain, the other got combined with 1/4 cup of roasted groundnuts and I stirred some into chocolate sauce for a number of variations on the theme.
Notes
  1. The key is in the deft use of the spices. Employ a light hand and add in batches, tweaking, recording, tasting till you get the perfect combination. Much success.
Adapted from From directions by Santifood Co
beta
calories
877

fat
4g

protein
6g

carbs
228g

more

Adapted from From directions by Santifood Co
Kitchen Butterfly http://www.kitchenbutterfly.com/