You read it first in this week’s The Factory in Guide magazine.

Sweet treat Date honey, AKA silan, isn’t made by bees — it’s a Middle Eastern syrup made by boiling and mashing dates. It’s added to any dish that might otherwise have honey or another syrup. –

You read it first in this week’s The Factory in Guide magazine.

Do you have a sweet tooth? A lot of people do. This doesn’t mean that one tooth is sweeter than another. It means that people who have a sweet tooth like things that are sweet. Many people have their favorite dessert or candy. Some people like cake while some only like pie. But all of these things have one thing in common, they all contain some type of sweetener.

Now, I’ve had honey, and I’ve had maple syrup, but I have never had date honey – or as they call it in the Middle East, silan date syrup. Have you? It sounds yummy if you like dates. Dates are very sweet and taste great by themselves or in cookie bars or granola.

Strictly speaking, silan date syrup is a very sweet syrup made from boiled and mashed dates. This substance can be used as a substitute for honey or maple syrup in recipes. But the best thing about this natural sweetener is that each serving of date syrup contains amounts of magnesium, potassium, amino acids, antioxidants and other trace minerals.

All these nutritional benefits are so much better for us than standard cane sugar. In fact, a tablespoon of date syrup contains more than twice the potassium, calcium, and magnesium levels of maple syrup or honey, with up to 10 times the antioxidants. Another site states date syrup contains several phytonutrient antioxidants that are shown to have antibacterial properties.

There are different kinds of dates. Two of the most popular are Medjool and Deglet Noor. The Medjool dates tend to be larger, softer and easier to work with in recipe preparation than the Deglet Noor, and require less boiling time because they are not as hard.

The dates come from the date palm tree, which can grow to about 100 feet tall. Leaves on the date palm only appear at the very top of the tree in a crown. Date palms can take 4 to 8 years after planting before they will bear fruit, and start producing viable yields for commercial harvest between 7 to 10 years. Mature date palms can produce 70-140 kilograms (150-300 pounds) of dates per harvest season.

Another cool thing about the date and the date palm tree is that these have been around for hundreds of years. In fact, Jesus probably ate this very fruit when he was growing up here on earth. Now that’s sweet!

Scripture taken from the New King James Version, Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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