In Britain is called lime honey, produced from the nectar of lime trees. In North America is better known as basswood honey harvested from basswood trees. No matter what name is used, the tree has been described as the queen of honey plants.
The Linden bloom is a honey plant, and the bees love it. This tree flowers in June, when the temperature reaches 25°C. The honey produced from its blossom is with slightly dark yellow/light orange colour and has a fresh characteristic flavour of linden flowers with a hint of caramel. It’s medium-bodied with a fine and delicate taste.
The Linden Blossom or Lime Blossom tree has a history that goes back thousands of years. It’s a beautiful tree whose fragrant blossoms have a spicy taste. A native to central Europe and Asia, the Linden tree grows in many places around the world.
In Ancient Greece and Egypt, the Linden tree was a sacred tree. It was dedicated to love and fidelity. Its barks leaves and flowers were used against fever, colds to promote sleep and serenity. Linden tree leaves are full of nutritional properties and rich in protein. During food shortages in the past as the one in second world war, linden leaves were dried and ground into flour.
Linden honey has high levels of calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, iron, phosphorus and many other microelements. In addition, it is rich in C and B vitamins. Linden honey is one of the most beneficial types of honey because of its rich content of minerals and vitamins. This honey has many therapeutic effects on the body and is used to treat colds, coughs, sore throats, and flu symptoms. People also use it to relieve migraine attacks or headaches.Linden honey is also an excellent sedative for insomnia because of its relaxing properties. It also acts on the nervous system because it contains magnesium, which reduces anxiety and calms nerves.
Pairing: Linden Honey is suitable for all kinds of plates on the table, bringing a delicate freshness and finishing touch.
Crystallisation: Raw Linden Honey crystallises relatively quick with a soft, crunchy consistency.
Linden Honey is one of the most precious and beneficial types of honey. With its combination of appearance, taste and nutritional profile, linden honey is certainly a variety to be tried.
We’ve all had it happen, opening the cupboard or looking in the pantry and finding a jar of honey that has been there for quite some time. You open the lid, and it’s all solid. “Uh-oh,” you think to yourself, “Now what do I do? Has it gone bad?”
The good news is that your honey is fine. In fact, it’s better than fine. It is actually a good sign that you have real pure honey. Not high temperature heated honey or corn syrup you can find on low prices on the shelves in a lot of shops these days. Actually, this is one of the main reasons for honey pasteurisation; to remove the crystallisation process. Therefore, the honey has a smooth golden look and remains runny forever, making it more attractive for many buyers and extending the so-called shelf life.
What is Crystallisation and Why Occurs:
Crystallisation is a natural process in raw honey during which honey changes its consistency form runny to set and ultimately becomes crystallised. Honey contains natural sugars, fructose (fruit sugar), glucose (grape sugar) and water. Depending on the type of honey, the content range from 30-44% fructose, 25-40% glucose, and around 20% water. The higher sugar content means the water in honey contains more sugar than it could naturally hold. When glucose crystallises and separates from the water, it takes the form of crystals. As the process progress and more glucose crystallise, those crystals spread through the honey and change the consistency, ultimately becoming thick or crystallised.
The different type of honey crystallises at different speeds. From 1 -2 months for rapeseed and sunflower honey to 1-2 years for varieties like Lavender and Acacia.
Temperature, relative humidity and the type of packaging could also make a difference in the speed of the crystallisation process. For example, lower temperatures speed up the process whilst higher delay the crystallisation. However, as long as the container is kept closed, crystallised honey can be safely consumed indefinitely without any adverse effects on its quality or flavour.
There’s been a silent war between the sweet lovers since the dawn of time. The battle? Whether raw honey or sugar is better. You would think that with the thousands of years honey and sugar have been around, someone would have figured out whether you should eat a spoonful of raw honey or processed cane juice crystals. But no one has. Well, it’s time to figure that out once and for all.
Raw Honey vs Sugar
Both honey and sugar are sources of carbohydrates, but the way they’re produced and processed can have significant differences.
Honey is obtained from flowers (mostly from the nectar of plants), while sugar is derived from a combination of sugar cane, beets, and corn. Although both honey and sugar contain sugar in the form of simple carbohydrates, they differ in their overall composition.
You can find it in almost every processed product that you see on the supermarket shelves. Why? It tastes good. But is it good for you?
The short answer is no. Refined white sugar undergoes many steps to remove impurities, producing a fine-grained, odourless product that dissolves quickly in liquids. What does that mean in simpler words? It’s stripped of vitamins and nutrients, and all you get is fructose and glucose. The food industry uses sugar in a wide variety of foods and drinks, but it’s listed under many different names. “Sugar” can mean regular table sugar (sucrose), or it can mean glucose, fructose, lactose and even high-fructose corn syrup.
The good thing about table sugar is that it’s cheap, tastes good and can be used in a variety of ways. Sugar is widely used to prevent spoilage when food is commercially canned or stored, with sugar being added as a preservative. But the list is far longer when it comes to downsides:
Consuming too much sugar can lead to weight gain and obesity.
High blood pressure and cardiovascular disease are two major complications associated with consuming too much sugar. If you have any of these conditions, watch your sugar intake.
Diabetes is another serious complication of consuming too much sugar. It increases your risk for heart disease and type 2 diabetes by as much as 30 percent.
Sugar is high in glycemic index (GI), meaning it causes your blood sugar to spike with the sudden crash.
Sugar is bad for you. You know it. We know it. But somehow, it keeps creeping into our diets. We try to cut back and eliminate as much as possible, but sometimes, we need a little pick-me-up to keep us going — especially when we overindulge in the evening and end up feeling sluggish the next day.
But that’s where honey comes in:
Raw Honey can replace any use of sugar. It can sweeten a bowl of oatmeal or yoghurt. Drizzle over sliced fruit or toast for breakfast. Add it into your tea or coffee instead of sugar. Sweeten smoothies, yoghurt, or pancakes, porridge; drizzle on breakfast fruits; spice up rice dishes; stir into iced teas, baking and cocking with it. The options are endless.
Honey is a product made by bees. They collect nectar from flowers, boil it and then ferment it. This makes it into a thick syrup that contains water, minerals and amino acids. But there is a difference between cheap plastic bottled honey from a supermarket and raw-unpasteurised 100% natural honey.
Raw honey doesn’t go through a process of pasteurisation and filtration which strips most of the nutrients, vitamins, enzymes and antioxidants naturally found in honey. In other words, cheap processed honey is nothing different from regular table sugar.
These are just some of the many benefits that raw honey provides:
Antibacterial and antifungal
Anticancer effects in animal studies
Helping with digestive issues
Soothing a sore throat
Protecting against ulcers
Reducing cough symptoms
Helps with allergies
The Bottom Line
The sweet golden syrup that comes from the beehive has long been considered a nutritional powerhouse. This ancient food has been used for centuries as both a food and medicine. Raw honey is not only food that tastes absolutely delicious but can provide our bodies with essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to strengthen our immune system. Next time when you’re thinking between sugar or honey, just remember health benefits associated with raw honey far outweigh those associated with sugar.