We love substituting honey in our recipes. Not only do we think it makes the food taste better, but it's also better for us! Honey is commonly used as a sweetener in teas and as a kick of sweetness drizzled on toast and in desserts. And what's so great about it is that it's slightly sweeter than sugar, so less can be used to acheive the same sweetness intensity.
However, cooking or baking with honey versus sugar requires some extra attention, and there are a few things to keep in mind when using it in your recipes.
Honey-sweetened baked goods tend to brown faster. Therefore, you need to bake them a little longer, but at a lower temperature to prevent them from burning. The same applies to cooking, too. Be sure to stir more often and turn down the temperature slightly to avoid scorching the dish. You will need to reduce the called for temperature by 25 degrees F.
Honey adds approximately three tablespoons of extra liquid per cup. Which means your baked goods will stay fresher for longer than those made with sugar. The slower baking will also help keep the texture of your baked goods moist rather than wet. Reduce the liquid called for in baked goods by about 1/5th to adjust for the extra liquid.
Since honey is slightly acidic, adding a little baking soda to the recipes of baked goods will help. Just the smallest amount, approximately 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoonful per cup of honey, will be enough to counteract the acidity of the honey which can cause overbrowning. However, don't add soda to yeast breads, because the leavening thrives in the mildly acid environment.
No matter what you cook or bake, remember that honey adds a special touch to almost any recipe. It provides that lingering flavor after a juicy bite that will leave your taste buds begging for more! Stick to these three, simple adjustments and you shouldn't run into any problems when cooking/baking with honey. However, following the rest of the recipe is up to you. Good luck and eat well!
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