When I was a kid I HATED dates, and just couldn’t understand how anyone could enjoy them. My palate hadn’t grown enough to appreciate the unique carmel-like flavor or the rich, “meaty” texture. These days, I love them. They are great alone or added to sweet or savory dishes that require a touch of sweet. Dates are a great sweet treat because of their complex flavor, but also because of the benefits of a fruit high in fiber and phytonutrients which balance out the effects of sugar. Below is the recipe I perfected for date butter, which is great for baking, spreading on a sandwich or eating from the jar with a spoon. ;)
Date butter makes it easy to add the flavor of dates to your dishes and this recipe is delicious and simple.
Ingredients & materials
3 cups unsulphered pitted dates (I used deglet noor for this recipe but you can use any variety)
Filtered water (just enough to cover the dates)
1/8 cup lemon juice
Mason jars (quart and pint size)
Make sure all dates are sufficiently pitted (pits are often left behind) and pack into quart sized jar. Add filtered water and refrigerate overnight. The next day, strain the water into a small container and keep for later. The syrup-like reserved liquid can be used in a batch of Raw Vanilla Cashew Milk in place of the dates in the recipe or as a liquid sweetener in any recipe.
Add one cup of dates into food processor or blender and process for a few minutes, add more dates and process until all have been incorporated. Use spoon to scrape down sides, add lemon juice and stir. Process until smooth and completely blended. If you require a smoother butter, add a bit of the date liquid to the butter and blend. Store in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks or freeze.
Makes about 2 cups.
Photo 1: BNC Commerce, Photo 2: My own
Try this recipe and experiment with adding dates to your favorite dishes (especially baked goods!) Post your recipes and questions below!