If you love baking, then you know that having a nice amber-colored jar of fresh honey in the cabinet can be like a secret weapon. Not only does it go perfectly on desserts as a glaze or baked into recipes like cinnamon oatmeal raisin cookies, but it is also a great natural sweetener for bread dough. However, the problem with baking with your best jar of honey is that you lose some of the subtleties of flavor that the bees worked so hard to create. That's why, according to some experts, the best way to have honey for dessert is to just eat it straight.
To learn more about how to enjoy a good jar of honey, Daily Meal spoke with Grace Singleton, the in-house artisan food expert at Ann Arbor's famous Zingerman's Deli. Singleton explains that nothing needs to be done to honey to make it an after-dinner treat. In fact, her version of a "simple dessert is to just grab a spoon and enjoy it straight out of the jar." She also recommends making this wonderful sweet moment into more of a ritual and says that the best way to do it is to "take your time and enjoy it."
A Mindful Moment Of Sweetness
By doing this, you can easily turn a spoonful of tantalizingly sweet artisanal honey into what Grace Singleton refers to as "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." That way, you can focus on enjoying the unique flavor of your honey by paying "attention to the first flavors you notice and how they develop, and what flavors come forward after you've finished," Singleton says.
Through this daily experience, you can not only start to understand all the layers of flavor present in honey and begin to differentiate between the many different types of honey but also enjoy a little moment of peaceful mindfulness. While a few moments of focus on flavors and sensations may seem like too short of a time to make a difference, this practice can actually have plenty of health benefits -- even if it's only for one minute. According to Psych Central, practicing mindfulness for a short period of time more regularly is more beneficial than longer and less frequent meditations, and Harvard's T.H. Chan School of Public Health notes that mindful eating "helps to increase gratitude for food."
The Dessert Full Of Antioxidants
Besides the mindfulness aspect that the act of eating honey as a dessert can bring to the table, the honey itself is also packed full of antioxidants and nutrients that are beneficial to our health. In fact, according to Medicine Net, a spoonful of honey does more than just help the medicine go down, it can actually help with diabetes management and promote good digestion and heart health.
However, when consuming honey for health, it's important to choose the right type of honey. This can be tricky because around ⅓ of the honey traded internationally is actually fake and made from cheaper substitutes like corn syrup or cane sugar, and these honey dupes don't have the same health benefits. In fact, some substitutes like high fructose corn syrup can be actively bad for you. Luckily, Grace Singleton has you covered for that, too, with her expert advice on how to choose the perfect jar of honey.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.