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What To Do With Crystallized Honey

by Lyndon Langley
What To Do With Crystallized Honey

What To Do With Crystallized Honey

Honey is one of those magical things that’s so easy to love but also so difficult to get enough of. It provides such an incredible amount of energy for very little effort, which makes sense when you consider how much sugar it contains. Yet at the same time, it has the ability to make even the most hardened among us become weepy with emotion. I myself have been known to shed tears while eating honey out of the comb.
The thing about sugar though is that once it hits your bloodstream, it can’t be absorbed by the body as easily as other sugars because of its unique molecular structure. The way around this limitation is through heat treatment, where honey undergoes intense heating to break down the bonds between molecules, allowing them to be reabsorbed by the body. This process was discovered long ago by ancient Egyptians who used to boil honey over open fires in order to extract more from it.
And like all good science, heat treatment became popular again during World War II when many countries ran short on sugar due to rationing. In fact, during WWII, the United States government actually provided free beeswax candles made using surplus honey. But why did people do this? Because honey is delicious. Not only does it taste great on bread, it also helps keep you full longer than sugary foods. And if you put it on popcorn before roasting it, you’ll find yourself enjoying more of the treat without getting sick of the sweetness.
However, you don’t need a lot of cooking skills to enjoy honey. One of my favorite ways to consume honey is straight off the spoon. You see, it doesn’t matter whether you’re consuming it by itself, mixed into yogurt, or stirred into oatmeal, honey tastes best when it’s fresh. If you’ve ever had a hard time finishing what’s left after someone else ate it first, then you know what I mean.
Crystallized honey isn’t just for kids either — savoring its floral goodness requires some experience. That’s because unlike raw honey, which tends to stay clear and runny, crystallized honey is opaque and thick. The result is that it takes longer to eat and it’s harder to work with. However, there are still plenty of uses for crystallized honey. For starters, it’s excellent in baked goods (like muffins) because it adds moisture and flavor. Plus, it keeps indefinitely in sealed containers.
If you’ve got any leftover crystallized honey, here are three recipes you might want to try.
Strawberry Rhubarb Dessert
This dessert pairs strawberries and rhubarb together for a natural sweetness. Instead of adding refined white sugar, I prefer to add honey instead. A tablespoon of honey per serving gives you a sweeter dessert without raising your blood sugar too high.
1 1/2 cups diced rhubarb
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup whole milk
1 egg, beaten
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup sugar
Freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 pound sliced strawberries
Combine the chopped rhubarb, cornstarch, and baking powder in a bowl and toss well. Set aside. Combine milk, eggs, salt, and melted butter in small saucepan and cook until warmed through, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in sugar until dissolved. Pour into large bowl and cool slightly. Add rhubarb mixture and mix thoroughly. Gradually stir in lemon juice. Transfer mixture to greased 9 x 13″ pan and smooth top. Arrange strawberry slices evenly over batter. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 35 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately. Makes 12 servings.
Serve this dish warm or cold. Top with whipped cream and garnish with fresh mint leaves.

Baked Oat Treats
These granola bars are packed with fiber and protein, plus they contain no added sugar. They’re perfect for giving away as gifts, bringing to school, or snacking on throughout the day. The combination of oats, almonds, and dried cranberries is sure to please both adults and children alike.
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup honey
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups mini pretzels broken in half
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix oats, almonds, applesauce, cranberries, honey, and cinnamon in medium mixing bowl. Spread mixture into lightly oiled 8 x 11″ pan; press pretzels evenly over mixture. Bake 15 to 18 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely on wire rack. Cut into desired sizes. Store covered at room temperature up to 3 months. Makes 16 servings.
Assemble these treats in bulk ahead of time, wrap individually, and give them as holiday gifts.

Sweet Potato Biscuits
If you haven’t tried making biscuits yet, now is the time. Making homemade biscuits is not only healthier than store-bought ones, but they also taste better. Unlike boxed mixes, which often include lots of preservatives, sodium, and other additives, homemade biscuits are pure, wholesome, and rich in flavor. Best of all, they take almost no time to whip up.
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 egg
1/2 cup mashed cooked sweet potato
1/4 cup minced onion
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups flour
Whisk together yogurt and egg in a large bowl until combined. Whisk in sweet potatoes, onion, garlic powder, cayenne, paprika, salt, and black pepper until blended. Slowly pour dry ingredients into wet ingredients and stir until dough forms. Lightly flour countertop or rolling pin and gently roll dough out onto floured surface. Use a sharp knife to cut biscuits into rounds or rectangles. Place on parchment paper lined cookie sheet and bake 12 to 14 minutes at 425 degrees Fahrenheit or until edges begin to turn golden brown. Let cool 2 to 3 minutes before serving. Makes 6 servings.
Try spreading some honey on your morning toast or drizzling some on your afternoon fruit salad. Just remember that some honeys are thicker than others, and you may need to experiment a bit to figure out what works best with certain dishes. Also, since crystallized honey is pretty strong, you probably won’t want to drink it straight from the bottle. But don’t worry — it tastes fantastic sprinkled on ice cream, cereal, popcorn, pastries, or anything else that needs a touch of sweetness.
Do you have any leftover crystallized honey? Here are two ideas for you:
Creamy Honey Sauce
Makes 4 servings.
1/4 cup fat-free sour cream
1 tablespoon light mayonnaise
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
2 tablespoons chopped baby spinach
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup crystallized honey
Mix together sour cream, mayonaise, cheese, spinach, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Drizzle in honey slowly, whisking continuously, until it’s fully incorporated. Continue whisking until sauce reaches desired consistency. Add extra honey to thin it out if needed. Keep refrigerated up to 5 days. Makes about 4 servings.

Add honey to pasta sauce, chili, soups, stews, and gravies.

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