I’ve never been much of a snacker, which I think has been a good thing for my waistline, I much preferred eating 3 sensible meals a day. Over the past 6 months I’ve had to change that and introduce snacks into my daily routine to better control some health issues I’ve been having. Before on the rare occasion that I did snack my choices weren’t always the best; it usually involved a piece of bread with some sort of spread. Now my snacks usually consist of fruit or veggies and/or some sort of lean protein. Since I’m eating more during the day it is very important to stick to healthy choices that aren’t going to either make me have low-blood sugar crashes or gain weight. This clementine and date syrup snack fits my requirements perfectly.
We all know how delicious clementines (a variety of mandarin oranges) taste: they are juicy, (generally) sweet and citrusy. Though delicious, this clementine needed a little bit more sweetness so that’s where the date syrup came in.
Date syrup is a 100% natural sweetener made by soaking and pureeing dates, sometimes water is also added. This deeply coloured syrup is, of course, vegan and free of preservatives and added sugar or starches — it’s truly a great product. Date syrup can be used just like any other sweetener or syrup. It goes great over fruit, oatmeal, yogurt, cheese, ice cream, pancakes, crepes, and waffles. I also love to add it to my tea, coffee and smoothies. You can also mix it into cake batters and cookie dough, or with other seasonings to use as a salad dressing or marinade. The possibilities are endless.
The smell is the same as dates and the taste is a deeply sweet and intense date flavour. The thick taste and colour really reminds me of black strap molasses — except this syrup is sweeter. Because of how intensely sweet date syrup is, you’ll need much less than other sweeteners.
Both date syrup and clementines are fruits and the sugars in both is fructose. Fructose has a low glycemic index, which means that the sugar in dates and clementines releases slowly into our bodies and we won’t suffer from sudden blood-sugar crashes. (Read more here) I can personally tell you that even though this was a sweet snack I didn’t have that yucky feeling we sometimes get after eating too much sugar; no crash for me! (I also ate a small amount of almonds to add protein to my snack.)
Thankfully my savory-spicy tooth is much stronger than my sweet tooth, so sweet snacks like these are a rare occasion for me. I don’t often use sugar, syrups or honey when I cook, but lately date syrup has been my number one sweetener choice. I purchased my bottle from a local health food store but I also found a different brand online here, if you’re interested. If you have the opportunity to try date syrup I hope you seize it. Enjoy!
Have any of you ever tasted or cooked with date syrup? Please share how you like to incorporate it into your cooking or baking.