Signed the Date Lady: Developing our two new caramels
Greetings! We know there are many of you that absolutely love our original caramel sauce and can’t quite imagine your coffee or smoothie bowl without it at this point in your life. So first of all, thank you for your kind loyalty – we are so very thankful for you. And now, why not keep offering it? Some of you liked it just the way it is, we know.
First, a little history to set this up: Not long after starting Date Lady in 2012, we added Date Lady Caramel Sauce to our product offering. It was kind of a natural for us. As you probably know, dates have a natural caramel note to them, and so it seemed like a good and worthy thing to create a caramel sauce out of the date syrup. We were aware of a “caramel extract” on the market and so we begin to experiment with it. Most of you know what an extract is. Think of vanilla extract. You can easily make this yourself at home by splitting open vanilla bean pods and letting them soak in an alcohol such as vodka for a certain amount of time. The alcohol extracts the vanilla from the vanilla bean. It’s beautiful really.
We inquired of our then supplier about the caramel extract and how it did not add any calories or significance to the nutrition if it indeed was extracted from actual burnt sugar, cream or any of the other common ingredients you would use in real caramel. They never would answer these questions directly and eventually changed the title of the product we were purchasing to “caramel flavor”. Yes, this indeed seemed suspect to us but we were reassured by that supplier, and others, that natural flavor was non-GMO and contained none of the common allergens – which put our minds at ease to a point. We would get a question here or there, but clearly most people weren’t worried about it.
So, we decided to switch to “organic flavor” which seemed like it would step up the quality even more, and that abated our concern for a while longer. However, the ingredients of the organic flavor are termed “proprietary,” but that isn’t really special in our book; rather, it is just… mysterious. Now, we aren’t going to load you up on a bunch of studies that show why natural or organic flavors are bad for you. You can do some research and make that decision for yourselves. Also, know that it is very common, and you may find it difficult to pull out many packaged goods in your pantry without natural or organic flavors in them. Tea, seltzer water, protein bars – you name it. Most of us would probably need to make a pretty significant change in order to do away with natural and or organic flavors completely. But on our caramel label, we only had three ingredients, and so the organic flavor stick out like a sore thumb, even though it was only around .001% of the recipe.
But we come back to the bottom line, which is that we don’t know what’s in the organic flavor. We started this company with the mission to offer products with pure and simple ingredients, something delicious that people can feel great about enjoying! And besides, we like the challenge of it – you know – using real food to create flavors. Both of the new caramels are so simple and so pure, without any questionable additives or ingredients. In our opinion, the best foods are.
For you hard-core fans of our first Date Lady caramel sauce, although we have already taken it off our website, there is quite a significant amount of product left on Amazon that you may stock up on if you so choose.
Thank you for reading and thank you so much for your support of our little company!
Colleen Date Lady Founder