Taste brought to the next level is easy to accomplish with the added essence of flavored sugars!
Now use your sugar in any drink or recipe you want to add a little umpf to and Enjoy!
Sugar, sugar, sugar…. what do we think?
I think sugar is “Sweet” and we all could use a little extra sweet in our day.
We all know that too much sugar isn’t good for us, and here at D’s we’re all about making better choices and having healthier options, but ARE we going to give up on all sugar…NO! Should we STOP making yummy treats…NO! So what are we to do?
Common sense tells us that the food that is least processed, freshest sourced and has the highest nutrition value is going to be the “best” choice. So here at D’s we use the least amount of sugar possible while still making a yummy sweet treat, use local ingredients when available, and YES even make our own fruit sugars for some of our favorite recipes.
The big question is….Is fruit sugar better for you?
Get a quick overview of the difference between natural vs. refined sugar, where they come from and how the work in our body and make your own decision.
“The American Diabetics Association” has a ranking system for figuring the Glycemic Level of food. Read the article and learn about the difference in GI Levels according to food, ripeness of produce, and even how cook time can affect the levels.
We could research for days on end and for every positive analysis we find, there will be a negative one to thwart it. Studies can be done, experts can give testimony and facts can be documented, but at the end of the day a good portion of what we “know” or “believe” is based on our own current health issues, desires and popular diet fads. So what does all that mean? All we can do educate ourselves and make the choices that work best for our lifestyle.
All I can say is strive to do what is best for you and in the meantime I will continue to make cookies.
Keeping it Sweet,
Making your own sugars is simple yet time consuming, but are well worth it!
Takes approximately 26 hrs from start to finish. Actual busy time is approx. 1 1/2 hrs.
Everyone is jumping on the band wagon of locally sourced products whether they are grown, raised or produced. Why? Although there are many reasons including economy, freshness and even trend, I think health is the best reason of all.
Knowing your food is critical for overall health. What is the nutrition value, its origin, and how is it processed are all questions of importance. I know, funny that a baker, essentially a maker of treats should be worried about any of those items, but in reality I worry about them all. My goodies are made with as many local ingredients that are available, with healthier alternatives when possible and always minimally processed.
Just a couple reasons to buy local.
Fruits and veggies from local farms or farmers markets…whether farmed organic, I.P.M. or more conventional methods will always be fresher than store bought. The fresher picked the fruit or veggie is the more nutritional value it will have.
Cross contamination is another reason to buy local. Contamination can occur from handling so common sense tells us less hands equals less chance of passing along harmful bacteria. Local farmers and producers have minimal handling (employees) and therefore lessen the chances of transfer through human contamination.
Education about your food and it’s sourcing doesn’t get any better than straight from the producers mouth. If you are interested in your food cycle then you should visit your local farms, farmers markets and small businesses to get the most direct education out there.
So local…an awesome weapon to have in your arsenal of health and wellness realization.
Who doesn’t love hot chocolate? Wintertime and Homemade just make it better as well as healthier.
My super easy, lower sugar, extra creamy recipe (can be doubled)
2 heaping Tbsp unsweetened cocoa
pinch salt (optional but worth it)
2 Tbsp sugar
3 Tbsp hot water
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 cups almond milk ; you can use any milk product, but I think almond milk makes creamiest drink
1 cup almonds
2 cups water + more for soaking
1 – 1 1/2 tsp pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
This recipe makes 2 cups and tastes even better the 2nd day. I find that it becomes super creamy when heated for hot chocolate or added to hot cereal.
*Pulp – I have used it in oatmeal, yogurt and granola. You can dry it further by spreading it on a baking sheet and baking at low temp (200) for about 1 1/2 hr.
Sugar free baking….hmmmm is there such a thing? Or at least such a tasty thing.
Since I personally boycott artificial sweeteners and the people asking me for this sort of goodie either can’t have or don’t want honey, molasses or pure maple syrup my options are limited. So where did I turn? Fruit of course.
Dates, apples, bananas and pears are all great choices but all aren’t always available, ripe or don’t perform at the same glycemic index level. I am a big believer in weighing pros and cons on whatever road you travel so my take…. I NEED a sweetener, it HAS to be natural, the DESIRE is for fruit based, they ALL have sugar content, and I WANT the most health benefits possible. The winner that best fits this…Dates.
These dates are very high in sugar but also full of fiber. Why is fiber in sugar consumption so important? Fiber slows down the absorption of sugar to your liver, which helps to regulate how your insulin responds. Dates are also packed with nutrients and minerals…not just 1% and 2 % of daily values, but significant amounts. So in my book this sweet little package is action packed and full of lots of those necessaries that I’m looking for.
Unfortunately though I had never eaten one, seen one up close or know how to use it in baking so what did I do? Research and more research. One point that stood out in all my searching was that medjool dates seemed the way to go. Picking them out was easy and there are more “expert” tips on how to prepare them than I care to recall, but most are pretty similar and relatively simple.
My condensed, cut corners (not necessary ones) super simple version.
Simple and yummy. So far I’ve used mine for baking brownies, sweetening oatmeal, and yes right off the spoon as well.