Honey, The Golden Treasure
Honey, ‘God’s food’, is a natural thick liquid produced by bees and characterized by its super sweetness. It contains different amounts of nutrients such as calcium, protein, carbohydrate, sodium, and potassium. We can distinguish many types of honey according to the seasonal changes, the geographic area of the beehive, and, of course, the nature of the bee itself. This tasty food substance, in fact, is one of the oldest sweetening elements that people have used. Today, different food cultures around the world depend on honey, as a basic ingredient, for many famous recipes.
Why using honey is good for us!?
We are constantly trying to limit processed foods that harm our bodies. We all know that good nutrition based on natural foods is key to long life good health. Cooking with honey, for example, is a perfect solution to avoid health problems linked to sugar. Modern science is finding that using honey as a natural sweetener does wonder for your body!
In this article, I will share with you 4 amazing ways to cook with honey and how you can benefit from this wonderful source of sweetness and happiness as well!
4 Best Ways to Use Honey in your Kitchen:
1- Honey For Baking:
Substituting honey for sugar is not only nutritious and healthy but, also, gives your baked goods different flavors depending on the type of honey you choose. Here are some rules for baking with honey:
A- Some types of honey, like acacia, can be three times as sweet as sugar. So, honey is always extra sweet, use less amount than sugar.
B- Water makes up a fifth of honey. So, you have to reduce the number of liquids to balance the percentage of water in your recipe. Baked goods go through a chemistry process, and we are swapping a liquid for a solid.
Note: The best thing for you if you have never experienced baking with honey is to start with using the amount of sugar and adding some honey. Accordingly, notice how much it changes the texture of your bread or cake.
C- Honey contains acids. So, add baking soda to balance the acidity in your recipe.
D- Honey, because of its high sugar content, bakes faster than granulated sugar. So, you have to reduce your oven temperature to prevent over-browning.
Here you find the modifications you need in your baked goods if you swap the honey for sugar:
2- Honey For Cooking:
You should always think of honey whenever you decide to cook! Cooking with honey provides pleasant smoothness and unique flavor to your favorite dishes. To use in casseroles, to marinate chicken breast, to roast beef, or to dress salads, this natural sweetener is a perfect ingredient for many different recipes either served hot or cold.
For people who love honey, just like me, I present this awesome honey garlic sauce recipe to make a delicious glaze for their roast.
Honey Garlic Sauce Recipe:
- 2 cups of Water
- 1/2 tbsp Minced Garlic
- 1/2 tbsp Onion Powder
- 1 teaspoon Minced Fresh Ginger Root
- 1/2 tbsp Black Pepper
- 1 teaspoon Sea Salt
- 2 tbsp Honey
- 1/4 cup Corn Starch
- Boil water.
- In a small bowl, mix the ingredients unless honey and corn starch.
- Wait for the water to come to about a medium boil and add your honey, but once you do this, put it on to a low soft simmer boil.
- Whisk and make sure that it is all broken down perfectly.
- Add the mixed ingredients to your sauce and whisk well. Let the sauce come up to temperature (when you notice tiny little bubbles on the top of the surface).
- Keep whisking the sauce, and add slowly your corn starch mixed with 1/2 cup of lukewarm water (whisk well to ensure not having any heavy clumps anywhere).
- Once your sauce is thickened up, take it off your heat and let it cool for about 15 minutes.
- Your homemade honey garlic sauce now is ready. You can store it in jars if you want.
3- Honey For Drinks:
Honey is an ideal substitute for sugar that you are adding to your drinks. Instead of having, for example, a cup of tea with one or two packets of sugar, just add some honey and enjoy the taste of this perfect natural sweetener. Also, if you love cocktails, honey is the best option for you. It is true that honey is a little bit thick and does not mix fully with the other ingredients, but you just need to make a honey syrup that will add value to your home bar.
Homemade Honey Syrup:
If you want to make easy homemade honey syrup, you need just to mix 1 cup of honey with 1/3 cup of hot water (not boiling water). Then, use a spoon to work your honey until it is completely melted.
Put it into a bottle to use whenever you like and enjoy your cocktails with robust sweet honey flavor.
4- Honey For Candies:
Yes! Honey is just perfect to make great honey taffy recipes for yourself or your children. I will show you, for example, my favorite recipe which is very simple to make!
Homemade Honey Candy Recipe:
- Honey: 1 or 2 cups (depending on how much candy you want to prepare)
- Butter: For the cooling process
- First, put honey into a saucepan and cook over medium heat until you reach about 270 degrees (If you do not have a thermometer, boil your honey gently for about 10 minutes). Check if your honey is ready by using a spoon and dropping it into cold water. Grab it then flatten it out. Once it is cool, it will be a little bit brittle just as needed.
- Prepare the place for honey to cool by spreading a fairly thin layer of butter on a pan.
- Pour your cooked honey into the pan to start the cooling process.
- As soon as your honey is cool enough to handle, butter your hands and handle it.
- Now, you need to pull the candy over and over and work it until it starts to get unworkable stiff and the color starts to change.
- Shape and stretch it into an even size all the way along (stretch it to the thickness that you want your end product candies to be).
- Use your kitchen scissors to cut your beautiful candies to the length you prefer.
- Cut up some wax paper and wrap them.
- I am sure you will love these homemade honey candies especially when the heavenly smell fills your whole house during the preparation.
I think I shared with you most of the ways I personally use to cook with honey! I hope you like them all!
Please, share them to encourage me!