Dates have had a metamorphosis in recent years. Once an ingredient used in middle eastern and northern African cooking (absolutely amazing in lamb tagine) and something you put into scones, date loaf and sticky date pudding – dates are now widely celebrated as an alternative to sugar in healthy baking and raw movement. Their incredible sweetness and soft sticky texture makes them an easy replacement for processed sugar.
I saw these yesterday in a magazine and had to give them a go. I had an online presentation booked at 11.30am and finished making and taking photos of these just before it started. It took me less than five minutes to make four of them and less than five minutes to to scoff the lot! The salt adds a nice balance stopping them from being cloyingly sweet, giving them a salt caramel flavour.
Make these for when you feel like something sweet such as after a meal or to have with coffee – as an alternative to baking. Be aware dates are high in fructose so don’t eat too many if you’re being mindful of sugar intake.
Medjool or fresh dates
Sea salt or himalayan salt
Carefully slice down the middle of each date without cutting right through. Open to remove the stone. Take a small amount of almond butter on the edge of a teaspoon or knife and smear into the gap before pressing the two sides together. Sprinkle with a teensy bit of salt. Eat!
*Dates are a good source of calcium, iron, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, magnesium and zinc, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, vitamin A and vitamin K.
*One tablespoon of almond butter contains as much protein as you get from the same quantity of meat. It is also an excellent source of fiber, which helps digestion and nourishes tissues. Just one teaspoon of almond butter contains more than 25% of your daily requirement of Vitamin E.