Agave Nectar, as previously mentioned, is a favorite new find of mine. This sweet sticky juice comes from the leaves of a plant found in Mexico and is almost wholly fructose. Because it's fructose in its natural form, it doesn't contain processing chemicals. (Bonus #1).
Agave Nectar is a great substitute for table sugar. Actually, it's slightly more sweet so you can use less of it -- about 25% less when making the adjustment in recipes. (Bonus #2).
But what originally drew me to try this syrup out is its low glycemic index. Because I'm hypoglycemic, I have sever reactions to most all sweeteners. You can blindfold me in a grocery store and I'll be able to tell you when we are near the cookie aisle simply because my head will start to pound from the smell of sugar. The low glycemic index means my blood sugar levels are less likely to spike after consuming it. (Bonus #3).
The nectar reminds me of honey in that it has a golden appearance and a light flavor. The consistency is slightly thinner than honey (making it easier to pour). And unlike honey it doesn't crust up or crystallize and wipes up easily if you spill a drop on the counter.
Because Agave Nectar is thin and melts easily, I'm thinking it would be the ideal way to make sweet iced-tea in the summer. I'm not going to call that Bonus #4 though, because I'm from the north where we like our iced-tea unsweetened, strong, and bitter.
I recently heard about a new cookout called Baking with Agave Nectar. I haven't seen it in person, but if you check it out, let me know!
Oh, and by the way, it's pronounced ah-GAH-veh.