08 January 2014

Magic Honey - From Crystals to Liquid in One Easy Step!

We love honey in our house. It is my favourite sweetener. We always have honey in the pantry and on the stockpile shelves. The problem is that it tends to crystallize before we can use it, and sometimes very quickly - that depends on the type of honey and how much there is of it.

I tend to buy honey whenever I see it at a great price, mainly because we like honey as a part of our real food diet. That means when I see it I buy it.

I'd love to be able to use raw honey all the time. Unfortunately the cost and the difficulty in sourcing it makes that a tad hard.

By the way do you know the difference between raw honey and the honey you buy in the supermarket?

Raw honey is simply that: raw honey that has been filtered to remove the odd bee part or lump of beeswax or other unappetizing additions.

Commercial honey - the kind you buy at the supermarket, has usually been ultra-filtered, heated and often blended with other honeys. These honeys tend to last longer on the shelf, taking longer to crystallize, than raw honey, which makes them ideal for supermarket sales.

Back to my crystallized honey. Crystallization is natural. Your honey isn't "off" or "bad" when it crystallizes. It has something to do with the natural glucose in the honey turning the liquid honey into semi-solid crystals.  It's a naturally occurring chemical reaction, nothing to worry about and, as I'm about to show you, it's easily remedied.

When you have crystallized honey, don't throw it out. Instead warm it very gently in hot (not boiling) water and like magic it will melt back into it's natural, golden, liquid glory.

Step 1. Put your jar of crystallized honey into a small saucepan. Pour in cool water, up to the level of honey in the honey pot.

Step 2. Very gently (especially if the honey jar is plastic) heat the water over a VERY low heat on the stove. Don't let the honey boil, you don't want to cook it.  Let the jar sit in the hot water until the honey miraculously melts into a thin liquid. It will take up to half an hour, but it will happen.

Step 3.  When the honey has turned into that beautiful golden liquid, carefully pour it into a clean GLASS jar with a tight fitting lid. For some reason honey takes longer to crystallize when it's stored in glass jars - could be something to do with the tighter fitting lids.  Keeping the air out will help to stop crystals forming too.

It's that easy. No need for special equipment. No complicated cooking process. Just gentle heating in some hot water.

I'm sure someone is going to let me know that this could have been done in seconds in the microwave. Perhaps it could. But the plastic jars honey comes in are not microwave safe. You run the risk of not only melting the plastic, but having it release toxins into the honey - yuk! Microwaving the honey may be fast, but it isn't a safe option.

And now I again have a jar of lovely liquid honey in the pantry, ready to use, I'm going to make a honey roll to use up the last of the cream leftover from my Ripple Cake.

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1 comment:

  1. I get my honey straight from the bee keeper and their advice is to place you jar into a bowl and pour hot water from the jug over the jar to the height of the honey and let sit till is cools.
    They advise against heating on the stove.


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