During our visit with local beekeeper, Susan Shipman, and her “girls,” we developed a deep appreciation for the gifts bees bestow upon us. Particularly, honey! After our visit in the hive, we got to enjoy the fruit of their labor with a honey tasting. We know. Yum! And we have to say, raw, fresh honey is a delight.
The quality, flavor, and benefits of honey will vary depending on the location in which it was collected. The plants and environment from which pollen, saps, nectars and resins are gathered and used to make the honey will influence its nutritional composition and taste. Our local honey, Tupelo Honey, for example, comes from the nectar in the blossoms of the gum trees that grow in the swamps of southern Georgia. We are partial of course, but it tastes pretty awesome. Although it is available throughout the year, honey is an exceptional treat in the summer and fall when it has just been harvested and is at its freshest.
Honey is perfect for those who are watching their weight. A tasty alternative to white sugar, researchers from Waikato University in Hamilton, New Zealand discovered that while sugar leads to weight gain, honey does not. The gift that keeps on giving! The researchers fed rats diets with no sugar, eight percent mixed sugars, or ten percent honey. The animals fed either honey or no sugar at all gained the same amount of weight, while those eating sugar gained significantly more weight.
We have several friends who swear by their local honey as a way to fight seasonal allergies too. There have been no peer-reviewed scientific studies to prove honey reduces allergies, but with a remedy this tasty, we figure it’s worth a try.
Of course we love to mix raw, organic honey with Brand New Day to create a luxurious, clarifying masque (In fact, pop over to Southern Weddings today to see how to make a refreshing iced tea pedicure). But with all these benefits, you can have your masque and eat it too! Our favorite honey treat? Plain greek yogurt drizzled with raw, organic honey topped with walnuts. Delicious!
All photos by Sarah DeShaw