THE NIBBLE (TM) - Great Finds for Foodies (tm)
Send An e-Postcard
Enter The Gourmet Giveaway
Print This Page
Bookmark This Page
Contact Us
Sign Up For The Top Pick Of The Week
THE NIBBLE (TM) - Great Finds for Foodies (tm) The Nibble on Twitter The Nibble on The Nibble on share this The Nibble  RSS Feed
THE NIBBLE’s Gourmet News & Views

Trends, Products & Items Of Note In The World Of Specialty Foods

This is the blog section of THE NIBBLE. Read all of our content on,
the online magazine about gourmet and specialty food.

Archive for Honey/Sugar/Syrup

TIP OF THE DAY: Creme Honey

Like honey but not the dripping and sticky mess?

Try creme honey. It’s in a semi-solid state and as spreadable as butter. In many countries around the world, it’s preferred to the liquid/syrup form of honey (see the different types of honey).

Creme honey—also known as churned honey, creamed honey, cremed honey, honey fondant, sugared honey, spun honey and whipped honey—is brought to market in a finely crystallized state. It can be made from any honey varietal or blend, and can also be flavored. (We particularly like the flavored creme honeys from Honey Ridge Farm, available in apricot and raspberry).

Enjoy it drip-free on:

  • Toast, scones, biscuits and other breads
  • Pancakes and waffles
  • Sandwiches (try peanut butter and honey)
  • Fruit—apple, banana or pear slices

    Creme honey doesn’t drip. Photo by Elvira
    Kalviste | THE NIBBLE.



    While all honey will crystallize over time, creme honey is intentionally crystallized via a controlled process so that, at room temperature, the honey can be spread like butter.

    The method to produce creme honey was patented in 1935. Previously processed creamed honey is added to pasteurized liquid honey and rested at a controlled temperature for a week, until the entire batch crystallizes.


    Creme honey is also available in fruit flavors. Photo courtesy River Soma | THE NIBBLE.



    What’s the difference between creme and cream? Why is it creme honey instead of cream honey?

    Crème, pronounced KREHM, is the French word for cream (the word for honey is miel, pronounced mee-EL).

    In America, French recipes were served at the tables of the wealthy, many of whom knew how to pronounce French properly.

    As these recipes entered the mainstream, people who did not know French began to pronounce crème as cream. Some people dispensed with the accent mark, to provide a mashup of French and English, and the industry has adopted crème or creme. If you were to write “cream honey,” you would not be incorrect.

    September is National Honey Month. Celebrate with creme honey.



    Check out our Honey Section for the history of honey, varietal honeys, food and honey pairings, recipes, trivia and everything you need for a honey education.



    TIP OF THE DAY: Organic Honey From Whole Foods Markets

    September is National Honey Month, a good reason to focus on our favorite ways to use honey.

    Even if you’re not Jewish, you can start this week with a Rosh Hashanah tradition:

    Celebrate the Jewish New Year with a traditional snack of apples and honey. The custom ushers in a sweet new year.

    We never thought to dip apples and honey until we were invited to our neighbors’ home one Rosh Hashanah 10 years ago. It’s become a favorite treat.

    TIP: Instead of placing the honey into a small dish for dipping, as in the photo, think of hollowing out a large apple and placing it, filled with honey, in the center of a plate of apple slices.

    We recently discovered that there’s a special prayer to recite before the honey and apples are consumed. THE NIBBLE doesn’t publish religious content, but we were so charmed by the thought of a prayer of thanks for honey and apples that we couldn’t resist:


    Honey and apples are a Rosh Hashanah tradition. Photo courtesy


  • Recite the first part of the prayer: Blessed are you Lord, our God, Ruler of the world, Creator of the fruit of the tree. (In Hebrew: Baruch atah Ado-nai, Ehlo-haynu melech Ha-olam, Borai p’ree ha’aritz.)
  • Take a bite of an apple slice dipped in honey.
  • Recite the second part of the prayer: May it be Your will, Adonai, our God and the God of our forefathers, that You renew for us a good and sweet year. (In Hebrew: Y’hee ratzon mee-l’fanekha, Adonai Elohaynu v’elohey avoteynu sh’tichadeish aleinu shanah tovah um’tuqah.
  • Enjoy the rest of the apples and honey.

    The new 365 Organic Mountain Forest Honey
    line. Photo courtesy Whole Foods Market.



    Just in time for fall apple-dipping, Whole Foods Market has introduced 365 Everyday Value Mountain Forest Honey, U.S. Grade A in four varieties:

  • Light Amber
  • Amber
  • Raw Honey
  • White Raw Honey
    Organic honey is made from the nectar of plants in fields that have not been treated with chemical pesticide. The fields must be pesticide-free for 20 miles in every direction of the beehives.


    In addition to organic certification, the honeys are also Whole Trade, a certification similar to Fair Trade. It ensures that the products were produced in a way that ensures fair prices to producers, safe and healthy working conditions for farm workers and environmentally-friendly production. (More about Fair Trade and similar certifying organizations).


    Try honey in these delicious recipes from Whole Foods:

  • Honey Lime Salmon Kabobs
  • Honey Mustard Coleslaw
  • Baklava With Honey Syrup

    Here’s everything you need to know about honey: types, storing and using, pairing, trivia, history, and more recipes.

    Have a sweet September.



    TIP OF THE DAY: Honey & Nuts Spread & Topping

    Homemade honey with nuts. Photo courtesy


    Honey Nuts Cheerios, Chex, Shredded Wheat and Special K; honey nut peanut butter and honey-roasted nuts: Honey and nuts are a natural pairing.

    If you’ve got nuts and honey, you can take the duo one step further:

    Combine them into a delicious bread spread and dessert topping, as people in Greece, Italy and elsewhere in the Mediterranean have been doing for thousands of years.

    You can find jars of honey with nuts at stores that specialize in Greek and Italian foods, or in cheese shops. They are lovely gifts and stocking stuffers.



  • Any honey*
  • Any nuts*
  • Glass jar†
    *Quantities depend on how much you are making and the capacity of the jar(s). While the photo above is more than half nuts, think of using 2/3 honey to 1/3 nuts—or even 1/4 nuts, if you want just a little. While whole nuts look prettier, they are not as spreadable. So if your goal is to make a bread spread rather than a dessert topping, consider chopping large nuts.

    †If you’re making this for home use, you can recycle an empty jar. If it’s for a gift, look for a prettier jar.



    1. TOAST nuts in a hot, dry pan, keeping them moving until the aroma wafts up (how to toast nuts). Cool.

    2. LAYER the nuts and honey in a clean jar. The nuts may migrate to the top of the jar, but you can easily stir them prior to use.


    If you like the combination, try different variations: sage honey with walnuts, orange blossom honey with almonds, and so on.


    Or buy a jar! Photo courtesy Moon Shine Trading Company.



  • As a bread spread
  • As a cheeses condiment
  • As a dip for pretzels, baby carrots, etc.
  • As a fruit topper
  • On ice cream and loaf cakes
  • On pancakes, waffles and French toast
  • Straight from the jar, on a spoon
    How would you use honey and nuts?


    TIP OF THE DAY: Sugar Substitutions

    Try something from this list instead of sugar.
    Photo courtesy Domino Foods.


    Don’t want refined sugar in your recipe? Here are substitutes for 1/2 cup sugar:

  • Agave syrup: 1/3 cup
  • Barley malt extract: 1-1/2 cups
  • Carrot juice: 1/2 cup
  • Dried fruit purée: 1-1/4 cups
  • Fruit: 2 cups
  • Fruit juice: 1/2 cup
  • Fruit juice concentrate: 1/2 cup
  • Unsweetened frozen juice concentrate: 1/2 cup
  • Honey: 1/2 cup
  • Maple syrup: 1/2 cup
  • Molasses: 2/3 cup
  • Rice syrup: 1-1/4 cups

    Remember to decrease or increase the amount of liquid or flour in the recipe, according to the liquid content of the sweetener.



    TIP OF THE DAY: Baking With Honey

    If you love to bake but want to use less refined sugar, consider honey as a substitute. Here are tips on cooking with honey from, the website of the National Honey Board, where you can find every type of recipe plus beekeepers in your area:


    Honey helps enhance browning, so it creates beautifully browned baked goods. The extra body provided by honey adds shape to cakes, pastries and other desserts. If you need to prepare baked goods in advance, honey gives them that “bakery fresh” taste, even days later.

  • Substitute honey for up to one-half of the sugar.
  • For easy removal when measuring honey, spray the measuring cup with cooking spray before adding honey.
  • Reduce the amount of liquid in the recipe by ¼ cup for each cup of honey used in baked goods.
  • Add about ½ teaspoon baking soda for each cup of honey used in baked goods.
  • You’ll need to increase beating time and speed, since it takes more vigorous beating to achieve the correct texture with honey.

    Reach for the honey instead of the sugar. Photo courtesy Michael S. Richter | Morguefile.

  • Reduce oven temperatures by 25°F to prevent over-browning of baked goods.

  • Select a mild, paler honey, such as clover, when delicate flavors predominate—baked goods, glazed vegetables, and subtle fruits like bananas, for example.
  • Select stronger, amber-colored honeys to accompany stronger flavors, such as peanut butter, meats and strong cheeses.

    Seabass with Aji Chile Honey Marinade.
    Photo courtesy Here‘a the recipe.



  • FRUIT: The combination of sweet fruits and honey brings out the best flavors of each. Apple slices dipped in honey is a luscious snack. Try sliced bananas, hazelnut spread and honey on toast or graham crackers for a tasty blend of flavors and textures.
  • ICE CREAM: Honey acts as an anti-freeze, which makes the ice cream’s consistency smoother and protects against crystallization. Here’s a recipe for peach ice cream with honey.
  • SALTY SNACKS: The combination of salt and sweet is a palate pleaser. We love dipping pretzels into honey, and making honey Cornflakes clusters instead of Rice Krispies treats.
  • CANDIED BACON: This recent craze is a special treat, but here‘s a tip: When making honey-candied bacon, the honey should be added to the bacon strips only after they have been cooked part of the way through. If the honey is added too soon, the honey will caramelize too quickly and the bacon will burn.
  • BREAD: Honey is a delicious bread spread instead of jam. Honey with buttermilk biscuits can’t be beat.

  • SALAD DRESSING: If you like sweetness in your salad dressing, add a half teaspoon of honey. It acts as a stabilizer, too, so the vinaigrette won’t separate.

    From appetizers and main dishes to sauces and sides, anywhere a sweetener is used you can substitute honey. We love it as a meat glaze and in marinades. Honey enhances browning and crisping, providing a more beautiful roast.

    Check out the honey-accented recipes at


  • Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: How To Soften Brown Sugar ~ Fast!

    Even though we stored our brown sugar in a supposedly airtight glass canister, it invariably became rock-hard in a few weeks, its natural high level of moisture evaporating into…well, who knows where it went?

    The old “Hints From Heloise” on how to soften brown sugar don’t work if you’re in a hurry. They include putting slices of apple or a slice of fresh bread into the airtight container. In a day or so, the moisture from the apple or bread will infuse into the sugar and soften it.

    But if you discover, as you’re making a recipe, that your brown sugar is one big hard lump, you need a fast solution.


    This simple gadget keeps brown sugar soft. Photo courtesy Improvements.

    Our friend Rose offered the solution: Place the brown sugar in a plastic bag (or in a microwavable container) with moist paper towel and microwave it for 20-30 seconds. Voilà, soft brown sugar.

    We subsequently came across these Terra Cotta Brown Sugar Disks. Soak a disk in water for 15 minutes, then add it to the container of brown sugar. The terra cotta (which is porous, unglazed baked clay) holds moisture, and releases it slowly to keep brown sugar or other foods moist for weeks.

    You can pick up a set of Terra Cotta Brown Sugar Disks ($8.99 for three) and give the other two to friends.

    Should you happen to have a small piece of terra cotta hanging around, you can try it first. We used a shard from a broken flower pot, wrapping it in cheesecloth to ensure that none of the broken surface would come into contact with the sugar.



    TIP OF THE DAY: Hey Shuga! Organic Sugar Cane Syrup & Stevia Syrup

    What if there were a sweetener that was all natural, organic and delicious? Lower in calories? Better for you? And as a bonus, packaged in a fun enough way to be giftable?

    Refined sugars (such as table sugar) are stripped of nutrients; most noncaloric sweeteners are artificial. Sugar isn’t all that convenient when you’re trying to get it to dissolve in iced coffee, iced tea or lemonade.

    One solution: liquid cane sugar and liquid stevia dissolve easily and are available in natural food stores. But one family business is treating them with imagination and sass. We bought quite a few bottles for ourselves and for holiday gifts.

    The Hey Shuga! line of all natural, organic liquid sweeteners dissolve instantly in cold beverages and cocktails, and are equally delicious in hot beverages, as topping for cereal and fruit, in baking and glazing.

    The two initial products are:


    Lil’ Shuga liquid stevia-cane sugar blend and Hey Shuga! liquid cane sugar. Photo courtesy Hey Shuga!


  • Hey Shuga! is a flavorful organic sugar cane syrup, 20 calories per teaspoon.
  • Lil’ Shuga! cuts calories by blending sugar with noncaloric stevia, 15 calories per teaspoon. However, since stevia makes the blend much sweeter than sugar, you use 1/3 as much: 5 calories’ worth.
    Both are alternatives to agave. corn syrup/golden syrup, honey, maple syrup, refined white sugar and conventional stevia. Lil’ Suga! has so few calories, you can use it instead of noncaloric sweeteners.

    Both have a delicious cane sugar taste, nothing artificial and are USDA organic certified, GMO free, gluten free and kosher certified by SKS.

    The line expects to expand next year to all-natural Hazelnut, Irish Cream, Maple and Vanilla flavors.

    You can purchase them on Amazon or on the website, which sells:

  • Hey Shuga! 12-ounce bottle, $7.99; case of 12, $80.000 ($6.66/bottle)
  • Lil’ Shuga! 8.5-ounce bottle, $9.99; case of 12, $94.00 ($7.83/bottle)
    There are also tall bottles, glamorous for gifting:

  • Hey Shuga! 33.8-ounce bottle, $20.00
  • Lil’ Shuga! 23.7-ounce bottle, $24.00

    Check out all the different types of sugar in our Sugar Glossary.



    TIP OF THE DAY: Bread Spread ~ Honey & Fromage Blanc

    Drizzle with honey: It’s heavenly. Photo
    courtesy Bee Raw Honey.


    You may go bonkers for a bagel or crazy for a croissant. But let us suggest another breakfast bread:

    Raisin bread, regular or toasted. It’s delicious plain, with butter or in this killer combination from Bee Raw Honey:

    Fromage blanc and apple slices on raisin bread, drizzled with basswood honey.

    You can vary the varietal and the type of honey, the spread (butter, crème fraîche, fresh goat cheese, Greek yogurt, quark).

    It’s special occasion breakfast bread.

    Bee Raw Honey’s single-varietal American honeys make memorable gifts. Honeys are not only regional, they’re also seasonal. Fall varietals include cranberry honey and wild black sage honey, perfect for house gifts and holiday gifts. Find out more at



    Fromage blanc is a type of fresh cream cheese—but not in the manner of Philadelphia Cream Cheese. Depending on the manufacturer, it can be very similar to both crème fraîche and quark.

    How soft, how tangy a flavor a cheese has, and other factors are production decisions. Fromage blanc may or may not be low in fat and calories. Because there is no federal standard of identity in the U.S., one manufacturer’s fromage blanc could be another’s quark (see our article on fresh cheeses).

    The fromage blanc from Vermont Creamery, for example, is extremely soft, with the consistency of sour cream and a similar tang. It is fat free, protein-packed and has a lower calorie count than other brands. The entire eight-ounce container has just 120 calories. Take that, sour cream!

    In France, fromage blanc is often eaten with fruit and sugar as a dessert. It is also very popular in cooking because it heats without separating.

    Pick some up during your next trip to the market.


    This fromage blanc is fat-free and low calorie. Photo courtesy Vermont Creamery.



    VALENTINE’S DAY: Our Valentine Gift To You

    How many different types of sugar have you
    had? Check them out in our Sugar Glossary.


    Here’s something sweet for Valentine’s Day: THE NIBBLE’s Sugar Glossary, featuring all types of sweeteners, in a downloadable PDF.

    What’s the difference between demerara and turbinado sugars? Corn syrup and golden syrup? Crystallized sugar and rock candy?

    You’ll find just about every type of sugar and sweetener, and hopefully will be inspired to use them in your recipes.

    The Sugar Glossary is one of our 80+ food glossaries. Take a look at the others and let us know the next glossary you’d like to be downloadable. (Use the Contact Us link at the top of the page).

    We’re always updating our glossaries as we come across new information. For the latest version of the Sugar Glossary, see the online article.




    TIP OF THE DAY: Cheese And Honey For Dessert

    A cheese plate with honeycomb. Photo
    courtesy Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board.


    Some of the most sophisticated diners don’t think of ending a meal with baked goods, ice cream, pudding or other sugary dessert. Instead, they prefer a plate of cheese.

    Available in every texture from soft and creamy to hard and grainy, an assortment of cheeses ends the meal with sophisticated flavors, and goes with the remaining wine.

    Cheese can be served with bread, crackers, fresh or dried fruits, nuts and other accompaniments (see our master list of cheese condiments and have fun pairing them with different cheeses).

    For a bit of dessert sweetness, cheese and honey are an excellent combination.

    Try honey with everything from mild, fresh goat cheeses, to bloomy-rind Brie and Camembert, to strong blue cheeses like Cabrales, Roquefort, Gorgonzola and Stilton, to aged Asiago, Gouda or Parmesan.



    Most of us already have honey in the kitchen. But think beyond generic* honey and look for sophisticated honey varieties.

  • Basswood, buckwheat, cranberry, orange blossom, raspberry, sage, saw palmetto and sourwood are just a few varietals that are as different in flavor as the cheeses they annoint. The honey carries the flavor of the plant from which the pollen was gathered.
  • There are also quite a few infused honeys: flavors added to the honey, from eucalyptus and orange to pear and truffle.
  • Serve the honey freestyle: drizzled on the plate, passed in the jar or a bowl, or as a slice of honeycomb, as shown in the photo.
    How many cheeses should you serve? Two to four varieties offer a nice contrast. If you only have one type of cheese, add more garnishes or serve it on a small plate of salad.

    And keep the slices small. Cheese has about 100 calories per ounce and it’s laden with cholesterol/saturated fat. It’s easy to polish off half a pound at a sitting. You’ll do your guests a favor by serving the cheese pre-plated instead of having them cut large slices for themselves.
    *Generic honey is generally imported from Argentina and China, where the goal is to provide sweetness. Flavor is secondary.


  • History Of Honey
  • Honey Facts
  • Honey Trivia Quiz
  • Storing & Using Honey
  • Pairing Varietal Honeys With Food & Beverages
  • Types Of Honey


    « Previous Page« Previous entries « Previous Page · Next Page » Next entries »Next Page »

    About Us
    Contact Us
    Privacy Policy
    Media Center
    Manufacturers & Retailers
    Facebook Auto Publish Powered By :