Varietal Spotlight: New York Basswood Honey

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New York Basswood Honey doesn’t reveal its secrets all in one go. To taste this varietal is to experience conflicting flavor notes all at once: delicate and biting, warm and cooling, clean and perfume-like. The rewards grow with every bite, eventually revealing a subtle floral character that lends itself to a wide range of pairings. Mild-mannered maybe, but never boring.

Basswood Honey has a low count of small pollen grains, which leads to relatively slow crystallization and makes for easy dissolving in hot tea and other beverages.

Basswood Honey’s light color and delicate, floral flavor make it a natural choice for everyday eating. Guaranteed to marry well with the complex flavors of estate-grown teas, Basswood makes a smart addition to any afternoon cup. (Pro tip: explore the explosive pairing of New York Basswood and Ti Quan Yin Oolong Tea and experience floral on a whole new level.)

On a fruit and cheese platter it shines--particularly with tart green apples and fresh, yogurty cheeses like fromage blanc. Try it drizzled over fresh-baked biscuits or vanilla ice cream, or add sweet elegance to your holiday spread with Basswood Honey Stuffing.

Our favorite use, however, we share with President George Washington. His breakfast of choice: hoe cake, a simple confection made of cornmeal, yeast and egg and drowned in honey and butter immediately before serving.

For the more adventurous, Basswood adds a playful herbal touch to cocktails. Try it in our Bee’s Knees, where it draws out the tart and floral character of juniper.

Basswood is the Bee's Knees. Get the secret ingredient

The basswood tree (Tilia americana), also known as linden, grows in the temperate hardwood woodlands of the central and eastern United States. With a natural range from Minnesota to Maine and as far south as Arkansas, basswood grows fast and blooms between April and July, attracting honeybees with its aromatic blossoms and nectar to spare. (Some call Tilia americana, affectionately, the “bee tree.”)

Given the species’ attractive foliage and potential to create shade, basswood is commonly found in public landscaping projects or lining boulevards. At full bloom, the whitish yellow flowers form drooping clusters and emit an intense aroma with notes of citrus and jasmine.

In general, raw honey is full of antioxidants and contains helpful trace elements and minerals, such as cobalt, copper, iodine, iron, magnesium and phosphorus. For centuries people have turned to raw honey for the topical treatment of minor wounds and burns, and as an antibacterial agent to promote overall health. Parents looking for natural remedies use raw honey as a cough suppressant, given its ability to coat and soothe the throat.

How do you use New York Basswood Honey? Let us know in the comments!

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Topics: Raw Honey, Home Chef, Honey Cocktails

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