Sunday, March 11, 2012

Date Caramels, No Added Sugar

These Date Caramels are super yummy.  What- did you think I would go the rest of my life without caramel?  Sad!  No thanks.  These are an amazing approximation.  And a great jumping off recipe for many others- you could make this into a frosting, syrup, use it as the base for a cookie, or cut them up really small and sprinkle them over whatever you like.  Dipped in melted unsweetened chocolate they become gourmet dark chocolate candies!  Yum!

No Sugar Date Caramels
1/2 cup raw unsalted cashews
1 cup loosely packed pitted dates
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp unsalted organic/grassfed butter

In your cuisi, pulse cashews until finely ground.  Add your dates and turn on your processor, and add your vanilla in through the spout as it whirs.  Once the dates are completely broken up, add your butter and pulse until it's well dispersed and the whole mixture is glossy.  You'll spread the mixture out on wax paper and press together into a circle, with about a 1/4 inch thickness.  Let this cool in the fridge for a few hours, then cut into squares, bars, or form into balls!  Want some delicious sea salt caramels?  Sprinkle some sea salt over them and press lightly to make sure the salt sticks.

How fun are easy, no-bake recipes like these?  I love them.  You could opt to leave out the butter, they would be more like cashew cookie lara bars basically.  I think using RAW unsalted cashews in this recipe is absolutely necessary.  Any other nut and the flavor would be totally different.  Though still delish of course.  But try this with almonds or walnuts and it's another story entirely.

What's your favorite way to use dates?  Any recipes to share?  XoxoGFG

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