If you love cooking, you know that having a pretty jar of fresh amber-colored honey in the cupboard can be like a secret weapon. Not only does it go great with desserts as a frosting or in recipes like Cinnamon Oatmeal Raisin Cookies, but it’s also a great natural sweetener for bread dough. However, the problem with baking with your best pot of honey is that you lose some of the subtleties of flavor that the bees worked so hard to create. This is why, according to some experts, the best way to consume honey as a dessert is to eat it directly.
To learn more about how to enjoy a great pot of honey, Daily Meal spoke with Grace Singleton, the artisan food expert at Ann Arbor’s famous Zingerman’s Deli. Singleton explains that there’s nothing you can do with honey to make it an after-dinner treat. In fact, her version of a “simple dessert is just grab a spoon and enjoy it straight from the jar.” She also recommends making this wonderful moment of sweetness a ritual and says the best way to do it is to “take your time and enjoy it.”
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A moment of gentleness in full awareness
By doing this, you can easily turn a spoonful of incredibly sweet artisan honey into what Grace Singleton calls “a quick little food-focused meditation.” Singleton also explains that you should take this moment to “close your eyes (and) slowly let the honey cover all parts of your mouth.” This way, you can focus on the unique flavor of your honey by paying “attention to the first flavors you notice and how they develop, as well as the flavors that come through once you’re done,” Singleton explains.
Through this daily experience, you can not only begin to understand all the layers of flavors present in honey and begin to differentiate between the many types of honey, but also enjoy a little moment of peaceful mindfulness. Although a few moments of focusing on flavors and sensations may seem too short to make a difference, this practice can actually have many health benefits, even if it’s just for a minute. According to Psych Central, practicing mindfulness for a short period of time more regularly is more beneficial than longer, less frequent meditations, and Harvard’s TH Chan School of Public Health notes that mindful eating “helps increase gratitude for food”.
The dessert full of antioxidants
Aside from the mindfulness aspect that eating honey as dessert can bring, honey itself is also full of antioxidants and nutrients that benefit our health. In fact, according to Medicine Net, a spoonful of honey does more than just help the medication go down, it can actually help with diabetes management and promote good digestion and heart health.
However, when consuming honey for health, it is important to choose the right type of honey. This can be tricky because about ⅓ of internationally marketed honey is actually fake and made from cheaper substitutes like corn syrup or cane sugar, and these honey dupes don’t have the same benefits for health. In fact, some substitutes like high fructose corn syrup can be very unhealthy. Luckily, Grace Singleton also has you covered with her expert advice on how to choose the perfect jar of honey.