Dates are very rich in antioxidants, vitamins and fibre. It is a more natural sweetener than honey and the best thing is that it can be given to babies below one year, unlike homey which is unsuitable for babies. There are fresh dates which can be made into a paste (read how you can make it here) or used to make a syrup, while there are dry dates which can be turned into powdered form.
Dried dates powder can be made and used in place of the paste because it has a longer shelf life. Making dry dates powder at home is easy and it is the perfect sugar and honey substitute for the whole family. Dates powder has many benefits that you cannot get from sugar or even honey but still contains sugar, so i would always say “do not use excessively because you believe it is not sugar…no, it does contain sugar too, but in addition to other nutritious elements”. Get on Instagram and Facebook to view a table showing all the benefits and comparison between dates, honey and sugar.
Now here’s the steps to making your own dates powder and granules at home. Watch the video if you don’t want to read the process.
What you’ll need:
- Dried Dates (It is best to buy already dried dates instead of drying them yourself as it may take a week or more to get it very dry)
Rinse the dates in water and pat them dry with a very clean kitchen towel. This is especially important if you bought them in the open market as it has been exposed to dust and dirt.
Deseed the dates. Most dates are dried with the seed intact, so you have to make sure you remove all the seeds by breaking them open with a hard object (i used a small pestle in my video). There may also be some bad ones which you can see as you as you open them up, so that goes too.
Spread and dry. Spread the broken up dates in the sun to dry again for a day or two. You can also choose the quicker way by drying them in the oven at a 100 -120 degrees Celsius for about 10 minutes.
Grind to a powder. Put the dates in your dry mill and blend to a powder. It is preferable to blend in batches and
remember the blender may not turn every thing powdery at once unlike commercial or industrial grinders.
Sieve & blend again. Pour the powder into a clean sieve and sift to separate the powder from the granules. Once done, you can blend the granules again to get more powder if using for baby only or you can put the granules to other uses for adults and kids.
Pour the powder and granules into a clean and dry airtight container or jar. This can keep for 1-2 months or more.
Dried dates powder can be used to make baby cereal, pap, custard, porridge, as well as beverage for kids. It can also be used to sweeten pancakes, muffins and other foods as a sugar replacement. Here’s a homemade plantain chips recipe with dates to try.
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