The first time I picked up a piece of honeycomb from my local farmers market, I was definitely intimidated. Honestly, I think I was drawn to just how pretty it looks. But once I got home, I had no clue about what to do with it. So it sat in my pantry for months before I had the courage to go back to the beekeeper at the market and ask him for advice. As it turns out, there are a whole lot of delicious ways to use it in the kitchen.
A Closer Look at Honeycomb
Honeycomb is made up of the tiny hexagonal cylinders bees create out of beeswax. It's where they deposit the honey they've produced and where they raise their larvae. While the biggest prize is the liquid gold that beekeepers extract from the comb, the comb is actually a treat in itself. That's why many beekeepers actually cut small pieces of the comb, still filled with liquid honey, and sell it as is.
Since it's made up of edible wax, the most surprising feature is its texture. It's distinctively chewy, with a little crunch here and there from bits of crystallized honey. And it's oozing with liquid honey, making it just as sweet and rich. Now it's just a matter of how to use it — here are five ways.
1. Alongside Cheese
Finish your cheese board with a chunk of honeycomb and you've just seriously upgraded the situation. Sticky-sweet honeycomb pairs exceptionally well with creamy cheese like brie, blue, and chèvre, as it not only balances the saltiness, but also adds texture.
2. On Top of Salads
Elevate a simple arugula salad by finishing it with a handful of chopped-up honeycomb. The sweetness offsets the peppery arugula and the chewy chunks make things more interesting. Tossing some blue cheese and fresh fruit, like pears, into the mix doesn't hurt either.
3. Stirred into Yogurt (and Oatmeal)
Just like liquid honey, honeycomb shines at breakfast. Stir it into yogurt to lend sweetness and a little texture, or let it melt and run through that warming bowl of oatmeal.
4. Spread on Toast
This works best with toast that's still warm. Drop a couple of small chunks on top and let them melt from the heat of the toast, mashing them with the back of a fork or knife if needed to get them all spread out and oozing over the bread. The same rules apply for warm biscuits, scones, and English muffins, for that matter.
5. Sprinkled on Ice Cream
Think vanilla ice cream is boring? It's not if you top it with honeycomb. This is one trick you'll want to remember the next time you need a last-minute dinner party dessert. Suddenly that pint you grabbed at the store is a whole lot more interesting and your guests will not only be impressed, but they'll also lick their bowls clean.