Honey: The Superfood
Honey has long been known as a “superfood” – it provides numerous health benefits and contains antimicrobial and anti-fungal properties. This superstar was found in Egyptian tombs and even today has become a backyard pastime for some. Nature can produce some pretty sweet stuff on its own, and infusing additional flavors into honey can result in some delectable tastes. Honey can also be infused with plants, such as cannabis, and important components of plants, such as terpenes.
Selecting Your Honey Base
Of course, you could just grab a basic honey bear off the grocery shelf to start with, but keep in mind, supermarket honey usually isn’t the best choice. Most producers pasteurize the honey to destroy the yeast it contains, making it smoother and giving it a longer shelf life. They then filter the honey to remove air bubbles and smaller debris not removed during straining; this makes the honey clearer and more attractive to customers. However, pasteurization and filtration often remove bee pollen from the honey as well – and since the pollen is responsible for most of honey’s health benefits, those benefits are lost when honey isn’t raw and unfiltered.
Many producers take the whole process a step further and use what’s called “ultrafiltration,” which makes the honey even smoother, while removing just about all of the pollen and the honey’s nutrients. Unethical companies may even add high-fructose corn syrup or other sweeteners, to increase their yield and reduce their costs. This product may be labeled honey, but it’s really just a honey-flavored sweetener.
To properly appreciate all the flavors of the honey, consider what kind of honey to start with based on where the bees gather their nectar.
Here are some honey types along with their flavor profiles:
Its aroma is delicate, sweet and flowery with hints of freshly cut grass or hay; suggestive of spicy cinnamon and plums. Its taste is clean, mild and very sweet that lingers in the mouth.
Sourced from Australia and New Zealand; Many note a distinct, aromatic scent, while the tastes amounts to damp earth and heather notes, a cool eucalyptus taste, and rich flavors of mineral, barley sugar, and herbs. The level of sweetness is around a medium level (with the sugar not overpowering the other flavors)
Wildflowers can be ANY flower that grows on its own in the wild, so the taste and flavor of wildflower honey can vary greatly from region to region. The types of wildflowers will also vary depending on the season. Because of the many factors that play into the flavor profile for wildflower honey, it’s best to taste the honey first and decide for yourself what flavors to pair with it.
Sourced only in the Spring from a small southeastern area of Georgia and into the Florida panhandle, this rare honey has been said to offer flavors from cinnamon and anise to jasmine and tangerine. You may want to just enjoy this special treat on its own and not infuse anything into it!
Orange Blossom honey
Carries a mild, but very sweet taste, with a hint of citrus aftertaste. True orange blossom honey doesn’t taste like you are necessarily biting into a juicy orange, so make sure you read the label to make sure the manufacturer didn’t just mix in an orange flavoring already. Artificial sweeteners and additives can affect the end product if you infuse additional flavors.
A saw palmetto tree isn’t large enough to be worth honeybees’ time until it’s about 100 years old (palmettos normally live for many hundreds of years). That means a huge number of these trees aren’t even able to produce enough nectar to make honey, and those which do don’t make very much of it. Palmetto honey tastes rich and robust, sweet and smoky with citrus and caramel overtones, but it’s complimentary to most other flavors and not overpowering.
Infused Honey Flavors
You’ve picked the right honey to use as your base. Now it’s time to pick what kinds of flavors to infuse! Some tastes might stand out naturally as a good choice to infuse into honey – cinnamon for example. Cinnamon and honey go well spread onto toast or stirred into tea. Flavors such as jalapeno may seem like an unlikely choice, but “sweet ‘n spicy” lovers can’t deny the power-packed hot punch with a sweet finish drizzled over chicken wings.
Here’s a list of some infusing inspirations:
- And even cannabis!
You just mix it all up, right?
Not exactly! Proper infusing is a delicate process, especially if you are infusing hemp or CBD. Placing a few cinnamon sticks in a jar of honey and letting it sit can produce infused results for a novice beginner. Check out a simple way to make herb-infused honey.
We specialize in infused honey and to our knowledge are the only terpene infused honey in the world. Using a proprietary infusion process, we infuse CBD and botanical terpenes into raw Florida honey. By finding the right balance of flavors through base honeys such as orange blossom and palmetto, we pair specific terpene blends to achieve a sweet and tasty profile.