Date caramel is a minimal-effort delicious treat. I think that I falsely thought for a long time that the more effort I put into making a dish, the more decadent and delicious it would be. I would spend hours perfecting with spices and extracts to create the perfect meal, and then I would scarf it down in about two minutes because I was so so hungry from meal preparation.
I have now discovered the beauty of quickly making meals, and it is wonderful. The most significant thing that I realized with shortening my prep time and my ingredients is that the essence of my favorite meals are not lost. I could have added cinnamon, nutmeg, peanut butter, almond milk, and a million extracts to this date caramel, but I bet you a million dollars that I would get just about the same enjoyment from it as I do from the way it is now. The only real difference would be the time and energy spent.
This realization has snuck its way into almost every meal I eat. Whenever I am about to make a dish that I have made several times in the past, I try to take a second to consider how I can simplify it. One thing that helps is by thinking “How can I make this a raw dish?” I find that raw dishes force me to simplify and they also (obviously) increase the number of fruits and vegetables in the meal.
In the case of date caramel, the almond butter pushes this snack out of the realm of raw foods, but it is still simple and delicious.
This is the type of food that is easy to combine with so many things. I have been dipping apples in it, stirring it into nice creams, and treating myself to spoonfuls of it all week long. It is definitely my current favorite food.
Let me know your take on it if you try it out!
- ♥ 2 cups pitted dates (about 50)
- ♥ 2-4 tablespoons warm water
- ♥ 2-3 tablespoons almond butter
- ♥ 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ♥ (Optional) Dash of salt
- Pour the dates into a food processor and pulse until the dates become sticky and clumpy.
- Add in the water, and pulse until the dates have become thickly combined. If the dates are too thick to be processed, just add another tablespoon of warm water and make sure to scrape the sides down so that the blade has access to them.
- Once the dates are thick and sticky, add in the almond butter (to taste preference), vanilla, and salt if desired.
- Puree until the ingredients are well combined and the sauce is at your preferred consistency.
- Scrape every last glob out of your processor and into a tupperware bowl to store in your fridge.
- ♥ If you want to thin the sauce as you are finishing it up, add in warm water one tablespoon as a time. If you want to thicken it, add in dates 5-6 at a time and process into the caramel.
- ♥ Caramel should last in the fridge for at least 3-4 days. That is the longest it has ever lasted before my eating it, so I can't speak to keeping it in there for longer than that.