Honey and the Thanksgiving Table
With the weather becoming chillier, honey-infused hot tea is a comforting and restorative treat. However, there are so many more uses for the golden nectar than flavoring a pot of tea. Throughout history, humans and animals have been eating honey for its nutritive sweetness. It can be used in everything from baking to cooking to homeopathy—raw honey is rich in important phytonutrients and has valuable anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.
Our Bee America family’s philosophy is both simple and natural… everything is better and more importantly, sweeter with the addition of honey. As the holidays approach people enjoy baking and cooking traditional family recipes. Incorporating honey into these treasured classics will only enhance their universal appeal.
The Thanksgiving meal is the perfect showcase for honey’s wonderful qualities in the kitchen as it:
- Enhances browning and crisping, which is perfect for glazing roasted meats and root vegetables
- Brightens the flavor of fruit-based dishes like cranberries and stuffing
- Improves a food’s texture and feel and is an excellent addition in pastries and pies
- Retains moisture in baked goods like quick breads and cake-- an essential ingredient for providing the moisture in rich cakes and prolonging the moisture retention
- Offers viscosity, which is important for puddings and other molded desserts
- Adds a beautiful golden hue to sauces and dressings
Here are some suggestions about how to incorporate Bee America Honey into your Thanksgiving Day menu:
Add a touch of honey to bread, potatoes or vegetables by including some scrumptious honey butter on the dinner table. It’s an especially delicious accompaniment to cornbread, biscuits, muffins, and pancakes. Whipping together a batch of honey butter is almost as sinfully easy as it is delicious: just mix four parts room-temperature, high quality butter with one part honey. For a smaller batch, beat together one stick of butter and 2 tablespoons of honey. Store leftovers (if there are any) in the refrigerator for future use.
Sauces and Dressings
Honey is the secret ingredient to a successful grilling sauce or salad dressing.
Instead of using a store-bought barbecue sauce, mix together honey, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, stone ground mustard and lemon juice for a deliciously tangy and sweet sauce. For your next salad, add a dollop of honey to balsamic vinaigrette to increase its delectability.
Honey is the magic ingredient for many types of soups including bisques, root vegetables, and curries. Worried about making your soup too sweet? Well don’t. Honey can actually increase the complexity of a soup and balance out its spices. The addition of honey to certain vegetable soups like cauliflower or parsnip can neutralize their potential bitterness. Or, if a soup is a bit on the spicy side, honey—when drizzled on top—can create a mellow mouthful. The very thickness of honey is also an added bonus when making soup. It’s viscous property helps to add structure to soups so they do not have that “watered-down” taste.
It seems that everyone has a favorite quick bread recipe. Unfortunately, most of them do not have honey as an ingredient. That is a shame, really, as honey is one way to ensure the creation of a moist bread that holds up on the second and even third day. All types of quick breads—from banana to pumpkin to zucchini to cranberry—can be improved by the sweetness and moisture-retentiveness of honey. As an added bonus, you will also discover that your bread stays fresher longer since honey acts as a natural preservative.