Agave syrup has become fashionable as an alternative to sugar. It is especially recommended for people who are slimming and diabetics. What's in it? It is 1.5 times sweeter than sugar, but has a much lower glycemic index and works great in the kitchen.
Let's take a closer look at this product and see how to use it. Agave syrup is also called agave nectar. It is a sweetener produced in Mexico from certain agave plants. It is pleasant to the taste. It is somewhat similar to diluted honey, but has a lower glycemic index (average percentage increase in blood glucose, measured two / three hours after a meal).
Production of agave syrup
Agave is cultivated for 5 to 7 years because it reaches the maximum amount of "sugar" at this age. It is then cut by hand by farmers. The core of the plant, called piña, is used to make the syrup because it resembles a pineapple when cut. Juice rich in inulin is pressed from the agave core. Interestingly, the juice after pressing is not sweet yet. Only when heated, it turns into sweet nectar, which is then filtered. A simple production method distinguishes agave syrup from other syrups with complex transformation processes, such as corn syrup.
Light or dark agave syrup
Agave syrup is an ingredient that appears in many recipes. It is used instead of sugar or honey.
The color of the agave syrup can vary from light to dark depending on the method of production. The color of the syrup has no effect on the glycemic index. Both syrups have a low GI.
- Bright agave syrup is made by heating to a higher temperature for a shorter time. It has a delicate and neutral flavor. For this reason, it is used in delicate dishes and cocktails.
- Dark agave syrup is made by heating it longer at a low temperature. It has stronger caramel notes and gives a distinctive flavor to dishes such as some desserts, birds, dishes with intense flavor such as seafood.
Agave syrup composition
Agave syrup consists of fructose (71% to 85% concentration), glucose (16% to 25%), and sucrose (max. 3%) and inulin. Agave syrup does not crystallize over time . It is well soluble in hot and cold water, therefore it is suitable for both sweetening hot tea and cold lemonade. It is a popular ingredient in many recipes. It has a long shelf life as it has a low water content and is therefore microbiologically stable and can usually be used for a very long time after the date stated on the packaging.
Agave syrup for health
Organic agave syrup is 1.5 times sweeter than white sugar. This means that to obtain a satisfactory level of sweetness, it is enough to use less than the commonly used sweeteners. In addition, for health-conscious people, it is important to know that nectar contains fiber and inulin, as well as natural enzymes, vitamins and minerals such as calcium and iron. Agave syrup also has a much lower glycemic index compared to white sugar and is therefore recommended for people who care about their line or suffer from diabetes.
See the sweetness comparison of the most popular sweeteners
Agave syrup glycemic index
The glycemic index is an indicator of how quickly the glucose level in our blood will increase after consuming the product. Products with a high glycemic index quickly raise blood glucose levels. Products with a low glycemic index do not raise or slowly raise blood glucose levels.
According to the Brand-Miller classification, the glycemic index of agave syrup is considered low. Agave syrup has a glycemic index of 32.
Below you will find a comparison of the glycemic index of the most popular sugars
Is agave syrup vegan?
Agave syrup is a plant-based (vegan) product. Agave syrup does not contain any ingredients, processes or derivatives of animal origin. The choice of organic agave syrup further ensures that the agave used as a raw material for production was free from any genetic manipulation and chemical changes. It also did not contain heavy metals such as: lead, arsenic, cadmium, antimony, zinc, iron and chromium.
What can be prepared with agave syrup
Sesame bars with agave syrup
What do we need for sesame bars with agave syrup?
- 300 g of sesame seeds
- 125 g of rice syrup
- 125 g of agave syrup
- 50 g of chopped nuts
- 2 tablespoons of water
- Vegetable oil to grease the sheet metal
1. Brown the sesame seeds in a large pan without fat. Rice and agave syrup, pour the water into a pot and heat up, stirring intensively. Bring to a boil and leave on low heat for about 7 minutes, stirring intensively all the time. During cooking, collect and dispose of the foam.
2. At the end of cooking, add the sesame seeds and chopped nuts. Mix well. Pour a layer of the compound approx. 1 cm thick onto the metal plate, previously smeared with oil. Cool and put in the fridge until the mass is well solidified. Cut into rectangles with a knife and serve. Instead of nuts, you can also add chopped peeled almonds to the bars.
Millet cookies with agave syrup
How to prepare millet cookies with agave syrup?
- 125 g of chopped almonds
- 50 g of agave syrup
- 40 g of millet flour
- 25 g of nuts
- 200 ml of soy cream
- Put the almonds in a hot pan and brown without adding any fat.
- Add the millet flour, soy cream, nuts, agave syrup and mix well.
- Bring to a boil and keep on low heat until it thickens.
- Use a small spoon to put the dough portions on a baking tray lined with baking paper.
- Knead the dough to form a flat cookie.
- Bake in an oven preheated to 160 degrees for 15-20 minutes.
Remember that pastries with the addition of syrup brown faster, so it's best to check frequently during baking to see if the cookies have baked too much.