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Simple Ways to Enjoy Eating Fresh Honeycomb
Many people enjoy eating honey but biting down on a piece of raw honeycomb is a special treat. For anyone unfamiliar with natural comb, the idea of eating honeycomb may come as a shock. Should we really chew and swallow beeswax? Yes, it is absolutely okay to consume honey in the comb. Here are some great ideas for those of you wondering how to eat honeycomb.
Can I Really Consume Beeswax Comb?
This idea does tend to freak people out just a bit. But, honeycomb is edible. Today, we are most familiar with the consumption of honey in liquid form. All those shiny jars of honey sitting on the shelves of our local grocery are the norm.
But, modern honey jars are sadly lacking in pieces of comb. This is mainly due to the extract expense required to produce comb honey. But, it does not mean that you can not eat the wax.
In fact, some people believe that consuming honey comb is healthier than just the liquid. Comb honey contains beeswax, honey, pollen and other substances.
When beekeepers harvest excess honey from the hive, they often remove the liquid honey from the comb. This is called extracting the honey. This process saves some of the wax comb for the bees to reuse.
Most people prefer to buy honey in liquid form. This consumer preference is due to the fact that you get more honey in a jar without comb. It also usually costs less than honey jars with comb.
If you can find honey in the comb – this is commonly called “chunk honey” or comb honey. It is a special treat-though in years past it was the standard way to enjoy eating honey.
When shopping for honeycomb to use in your recipes, purchase fresh honeycomb from a USA source.
Do Bees Eat Honeycomb?
Bees do not eat honeycomb but they use it to construct their home. Honey bees make wax and shape it into sheets of hexagonal cells. This gives them room to raise young and store honey.
Consuming their wax would not provide any nutrition for the bees, but it makes a great storage system.
However, you may see a honey bee chewing on small pieces of wax. They use their legs and mouth to form the wax into the sheets of comb that we see in a beehive.
How to Eat Raw Honeycomb
When you bite into a piece of honeycomb, you feel the liquid honey “explode” from the individual cells. This provides a unique taste sensation.
But because beeswax is “waxy”, if you continue to chew the result will be a ball of wax in your mouth.
Some people swallow the wax in small pieces after the honey is gone but it is perfectly okay to spit it out if you prefer.
One of the best ways to enjoy honeycomb is to eat it all by itself. Cut it into small pieces and dig in – it is quite an experience. This is the most pristine way to enjoy truly raw honey in its natural form.
Ways to Enjoy Eating Raw Honeycomb
- cut honeycomb into small pieces and enjoy
- mix small chunks of honeycomb into softened vanilla ice cream
- top plain yogurt with pieces of honeycomb and add a honey drizzle
- spread honeycomb on warm bread, toast or muffins
- place a thin slice of honeycomb on top of waffles or pancakes
- a great addition to grilled sandwiches
- pair cubes of honeycomb with flavorful goat cheeses
- toss small pieces of honeycomb into your favorite salad
For those of you who are not beekeepers, pairing fresh honeycomb with other foods is the most popular form of consumption.
When eating honeycomb, the individual wax cells hold the honey until you bite into them. This allows the honey flavor to really stand out and not be lost in the other food flavors.
Honeycomb pieces are often added to recipes. Sometimes, it becomes a main ingredient paired with another food.
Sweeten Hot Tea
Some people enjoy using small pieces of honeycomb to sweeten their hot tea. I’m a bit too much of a Southern Iced Tea girl to try it but I hear it is quite good.
Stir a small piece of honeycomb into your hot tea, letting it melt completely.
Honeycomb Paired with Cheese
Honeycomb makes a beautiful presentation when paired with a cheese tray. Let guest slice off the amount of comb their desire. Small sliced bread pieces or crackers are a nice touch.
Aged cheeses with a tangy flavor or even goat cheeses are good pairings for raw honeycomb. Be sure to drain your piece of honeycomb first so you will not have a lot of liquid oozing out.
Benefits of Eating Honeycomb
What are the health benefits, if any, to eating raw honeycomb? The answer to this question depends in part on who you ask.
Pure beeswax is indigestible by the human digestive system. When you swallow beeswax, it will pass through your system in the same way as any insoluble item.
Some proponents of eating honeycomb believe you get more healthy nutrients, minerals and enzymes from its consumption.
However, whether this form of eating honey is better or not – it is a unique experience. Honeycomb will add surprising sweetness and texture to any other type of food.
One thing I know for sure is that honeycomb is a simple natural food. It has been consumed for thousands of years and never spoils.
One thing to keep in mind, a jar of honey with pieces of comb may crystallize faster. It is a good idea to remove pieces of comb unless you plan to eat them right away.
Once you learn the best way to store honeycomb and protect it from moisture, you can always have some on hand.
A Final Word on How to Eat Raw Honeycomb
There are many easy way to enjoy eating pieces of honeycomb. You can make it as simple or as complex as you desire. Never tried it? Maybe it’s time you should and find out what you have been missing!