Daily Camera, Boulder, Colo.
WWR Article Summary (Tl;dr) Entrepreneur Amanda Adare says that she is grateful to see that her homemade project (making caramel sauce for the family) turned into a blossoming business that can now be found on the shelves of Whole Foods.
Caramel — with its hint of vanilla and glossy hue — has long been a crowd-pleasing staple of ice cream sundaes and used as a gleaming shell to encase plump apples. Folks stir it into popcorn, submerge almonds into it, top it with salt and oftentimes generously drizzle it onto the cracked surface of brownies.
The owners of Table Mountain Farm, a 12-acre property in Longmont, are redefining just how the sweet product can be used with an artisanal line of caramel sauces made from Colorado goats’ milk and other natural, high-quality ingredients.
“I am so very grateful to see what started as a homemade project, making caramel sauce for the family, turn into a product that has grown to be on the shelves of Whole Foods,” said maker of the caramel sauces Amanda Adare, who runs Table Mountain Farm with her husband Andrew Adare.
“For me, it has felt like a very gradual process with time to learn and perfect our product each step, from my kitchen, to the farmers market to local stores and then Whole Foods.”
The sauces, that have been featured in The New York Times and Better Homes & Gardens, currently come in four flavors — Vanilla Bean, Cinnamon Vanilla, Salted Dark Chocolate and Whiskey.
“Once I figured out how to make goat milk caramel sauce, I was surprised by how different it tasted and how long it lasted,” Amanda Adare said. “Everyone who tried it agreed and their reactions and positive feedback kept me going. Most caramel sauce has a very buttery flavor and is full of high fructose corn syrup and additives that quicken the caramelization process. When slow cooking and hand stirring caramel sauce with only three ingredients — milk, sugar and baking soda — the result is almost magical.
While the ingredients are pure and simple, the method is incredibly time consuming — but a procedure Adare would never look to shorten as the final result would be compromised.
“The five-hour cooking process allows time for whole ingredients to steep and release their full flavor, such as vanilla beans and cinnamon sticks,” Amanda Adare said. “I believe our caramel sauce differs greatly from anything else on the shelf because of the flavor and the integrity of the product.”
Interested buyers can purchase the sauces directly from tablemountainfarm.com/shop-1. Free shipping comes with orders over $85 when using the code “SHOPSMALL.”
“Anyone with allergies to cow milk can’t have most caramel, but they can have ours,” Amanda Adare said. “We also use milk from a particular breed of goat which does not have the gamey flavor typically ascribed to goat products.”
Adare originally used milk from her own goats in her first culinary experiments. Now, due to the brand’s expansion and the sheer volume she has to produce, she utilizes pasteurized milk from Mini Moos and Kids Too Goat Dairy in Canyon City.
The location of production has moved from her home kitchen into a larger commercial one, yet Adare still clocks hours stirring the divine mixture to obtain the right consistency, sheen and flavor.
The unique offerings go far beyond just a complement to a scoop of vanilla bean.
“I typically say, you can replace any recipe that calls for honey or half the sugar with our caramel sauce,” Amanda Adare said. “Our caramel sauce is sweet and creamy, wonderful when used to sweeten any drink, from tea to cocoa to coffees. I use our Cinnamon Vanilla to sweeten hot apple cider or replace half the sugar to coat fruits in a baked pie. The Vanilla Bean is fantastic on pancakes, baked French toast or replacing frosting atop cinnamon rolls.”
In 2021, Adare plans to add a coffee flavor to her arsenal of liquid gold. She is also going to release a not-yet-revealed limited edition flavor in the spring.
“Whiskey flavor is excellent in an eggnog and savory dishes such as pork tenderloin, glazed salmon and charcuterie boards,” Amanda Adare said. “The salted dark chocolate’s rich and creamy flavor is fantastic in coffee drinks and hot cocoa as well as ice cream and chocolate desserts. We love seeing what our customers enjoy coming up with as they experiment and enjoy in their kitchen.”
From spreading it on toast with Nutella to innovatively pairing it with a wheel of goat cheese, there are many possibilities. Buyers are also encouraged to consume the silky goodness right out of the $10 5-ounce jars.
At the heart of Adare’s sauces is the desire to encourage a bit of indulgence and bring cheer to both holiday tables and the everyday. A variety pack of 2-ounce jars retails for $22.
“I hate seeing the food industry shame women and men into consuming highly processed preservative-filled products in the name of saving calories,” Amanda Adare said. “I want people to fall in love with dessert again, to enjoy themselves, their surroundings and to have their senses remind them of how sweet life truly is.”
Adare, who was raised in Manhattan, used to work for the World Health Organization and had a career in nonprofit management prior to launching the nationwide caramel sauce line. She previously ran Dairy in Developing Countries, a nonprofit designed to help small farmers in Kenya and Nicaragua create sustainable dairy enterprises.
“We go to great lengths to ensure every ingredient is top shelf and the most responsibly sourced,” Amanda Adare said. “It isn’t worth doing anything that would trick our customers or exploits the planet, people or animals.
Having worked in international development, I know many ingredients come from high-conflict regions and I have seen the damage done to source these products. Our vanilla beans are purchased directly from farmers in-country.”
Built on integrity, Table Mountain Goat Milk Caramel sauces are crafted with the earth and local economy in mind.
“We use fair trade and/or organic ingredients and source everything in Colorado, from jars to labels to sugar,” Amanda Adare said. “We are as low-waste as possible and supporting other small local businesses each step of the way. Two percent of every sale goes to Conservation Colorado and their environmental justice work.”
When the Adares moved to their Front Range farm, their daughter, Judy Grace, was just 1 1/2. Now, at age 4, she helps her mom in the kitchen.
“Judy has been involved in nearly every recipe you see on Instagram and I have dreams of building something with her when she is a little older,” Amanda Adare said. “It is the greatest achievement of my life to manifest a dream of showing my daughter what it looks like to go for what you want and be an entrepreneur by being one myself.”
Adare’s husband Andrew often steps into the role of taste tester.
“Ironically, I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, but I appreciate the distinctive ingredients and the complete absence of any processed flavor in her products,” said Andrew Adare. “Inevitably, she’s always got me tasting a new sample while we’re in the kitchen right after I’ve just taken a bite of some random snack.”
In addition to picking up a jar for the holidays, folks can support Table Mountain by purchasing cards featuring many of their quirky goats that reside on the property just outside of Boulder.
“One thing I love about living on the farm is the practice of applying problem-solving skills to keep our farm gear in service,” said Andrew Adare, who works in the tech industry. “A few years ago, I took up welding to build a mobile chicken coop on an old trailer and now welding and metal fabrication have grown to become some of my favorite spare time activities. Another thing I wish people could experience is the kinship we have with these creatures, We provide for them and they provide for us in a cycle of care. It’s just the opposite of exploitation.”
Eggs and milk produced on Table Mountain are just for homestead use, but the idea of an eventual CSA is of interest to the Adares.
“Amanda (Adare) manages the farm chores and parenting in the midst of sourcing ingredients, making the products and even packing and delivering them to stores herself,” Andrew Adare said. “Someday I’d love to start a business out of my home workshop, but I don’t have the concept fleshed out yet. For now, I’m watching to see how she pulls all this off and I’m extracting all the inspiration I can from her entrepreneurial spirit.”
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