How to eat comb honey

The first time I saw extracted honey in a jar with no comb, I wondered why anyone would do that. Why would someone separate two things that belong together? Imagine eating a yolk without the white or a chocolate chip without the cookie. What’s the point? Where I grew up in the foothills of the Allegheny Mountains, honey came in a comb in a little wooden box. There was no alternative. This regional tradition apparently began in the “comb honey era.”

According to The ABC & XYZ of Bee Culture, the comb honey era lasted from 1880 to 1915, and was a time when most beekeepers in America produced comb honey. Before the enactment of the pure food and drug laws, liquid honey was frequently “extended” with corn syrup, so consumers preferred honey that came straight from the bees with no human interference. When they ate a chunk of comb honey they knew it was pure, just as the bees had intended.

As time went on, several things happened. Laws came into being that assured better food handling and labeling, honey extraction equipment improved, and beeswax by itself became popular for industrial uses. Beekeepers could make more money by selling the honey and the wax separately. In addition, if a beekeeper re-used his wax combs year after year, he could get bigger crops of honey. It takes a lot of bee-power to make the comb, so providing ready-made comb allows the bees to store more honey.

Unfortunately, we lost a real treat when comb honey disappeared. Each batch of honey retains the floral essences of the plants from which it was made, but the flavor of wax comb also differs according to what the bees ate and adds a richness to the flavor that extracted honey doesn’t have. Add to this the aroma of the basswood section box in which the comb was built, and you have a combination of flavors, textures, and aromas you can’t find anywhere else on earth.

Today comb honey is experiencing a re-birth, but it is now considered a luxury item. I’ve seen it for sale for as much as $26.95 for a 12-ounce square—and it’s usually made in a plastic box. Plastic! Take away the basswood box and you’ve lost a major component of the comb honey experience. But this product is fast disappearing. As far as I know, there is only one manufacturer of basswood section boxes left in America.

So if you have the opportunity to try comb honey in a basswood box, go for it. For novice honeycomb eaters, I always recommend the following:

  • Toast a piece of your favorite bread or an English muffin. While it is still very hot, spread it lightly with butter. With a knife, cut a chunk of comb honey and spread it over the toast. You may have to mash it a bit, but the heat will soften the comb so it flattens into the toast along with the honey. It doesn’t melt, but becomes soft and aromatic. It is also good on hot biscuits, French toast, or pancakes.
  • The upscale restaurants often serve comb honey in the center of a plate surrounded by a selection of expensive cheeses and multi-grain crackers. The idea here is to cover the cracker with a piece of cheese and top it off with a small chunk of comb. This works great with cheddar or brie, but any cheese will work.

If anyone has other favorite ways to eat comb honey, let me know and I will post them on this site. In the meantime, enjoy!

Rusty
HoneyBeeSuite

Comb honey ready to eat
Comb honey ready to eat

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Comments

Karen Harris
Reply

Rusty,

I grew up helping my father produce comb honey in basswood boxes. This summer I purchased all of the equipment, including the carton shown above from Kelley Bees. My bees have filled the boxes in one super and I am ready to take the super off. I would like to sell the honey at my local farmers’ market, but have two questions that I can’t find answers to. First, what are people charging for this type of comb honey and secondly, are there any health department regulations that I should be aware of.

Thanks for any help you can provide me.

Karen Harris

Rusty
Reply

Hi Karen,

I’m so glad you are producing comb honey in section boxes! Congratulations! I wish more people would do it.

The thing that really shocked me is that this year Kelley’s basswood sections went from about 30 cents apiece to about 80 cents a piece. The window cartons are another 45 cents each, and then you may use plastic liners and you may have purchased or printed labels. In any case you’ve spent about $2 per section before the bees have even seen it.

Quite frankly, I have trouble pricing because I don’t want to be ridiculous but I don’t want to give them away either. I tend to hover around $15/section. I have been selling them in bulk to some people for $10, but now I think that’s low. I’ve seen them in catalogs for $24 or $25, but I think that’s high.

If I were to sell them at our local farmer’s market, I think I would try for $15-18. You can also vary the price depending on the weight. Some of my sections are under a pound (14 or 15 ounces) and some are over (up to about 17 ounces.) So you could go a little higher for the bigger ones, less on the smaller ones. You could maybe have two prices, one for over a pound and one for less than a pound.

Even if you don’t vary the price by weight, you should label the weight because round sections and hogg sections are usually much lighter (around 12 ounces) so you want the consumer to know that. Also, I don’t know where you are but you can get higher prices in the city than in rural areas.

As far as I know there are no food handling laws for comb honey. At least, not here in Washington. It’s like selling a zucchini or peach from your garden. But once you extract you have “processed” the food and laws may come into effect, depending on where you live. I’d have to do some research, but it seems that there is some special exemption for comb honey that applies throughout the country.

I’d like to know how this works out for you and what you end up charging. In the meantime, I will try to go more in depth on the laws, just for curiosity.

Good luck and congratulations again. Producing section honey is an accomplishment.

anhet
Reply

That is too weird. Will it get you sick?

anhet
Reply

I hope it is fun. I ate a bee before.

Paul Guernsey Player
Reply

Most humble apologies for the following dumb question:

Are you supposed to eat the wax or spit it out? Do you swallow it? I assume if it is all mixed in with corn meal mush or oat meal, then you’re not going to be bothering much with separating the wax from the food in your mouth. But I don’t presume to know that, either.

I just filtered all the wax out of my comb honey and rendered it because it seemed like the “thing to do.” Next time, I’ll set at least a little aside for “eating” or whatever you are supposed to do with it in your mouth.

Rusty
Reply

Paul,

There is no such thing as a dumb question, but that doesn’t mean you aren’t funny . . . lots of entertainment value in the way you worded your question.

Okay. You eat it, you swallow it. For all practical purposes, it is gone from the face of the earth.

Here’s the thing. If you spread it (honey and comb) on something you chew–such as bread, toast or crackers–you won’t even notice the wax. Believe me on this. It will be down the hatch and you won’t notice anything but the enhanced flavor of honey in the comb.

This is hard to imagine because if you eat it alone–just a chunk of comb–you are left with this big wad of wax in your mouth which, quite frankly, is awful. Yuck. So while I love eating comb honey, I never eat it unless it is on something I’m going to chew. Like toast.

You absolutely must try this before making a judgement on it. Some of my classmates in graduate school called me the “Johnny Appleseed of comb honey” because I was always giving it away in return for a promise they would at least try eating it on something. I don’t know a single one who was disappointed. (Well, one guy put it in his tea and ended up with a film of floating wax which he didn’t like. But I figure this doesn’t count because I told him to eat it, not drink it.)

Warm food such as English muffins are really good because the heat from the food causes the wax to melt down into the interstices. All the better. I had it for breakfast this morning. I also like peanut butter and comb honey sandwiches. Yum.

Promise me you will try this, okay? And report back whenever. And you can write entertaining comments whenever you want.

Wolfy
Reply

I had no idea that’s how you’re supposed to eat comb honey… I’ve only had awful experiences eating it plain, with wads of not-quite-one-bit-lump wax in my mouth (and teeth). Thanks for explaining it… and making it sound so delicious. You know what? I promise you the next time I see it at a farmer’s market or fair, I’ll buy it, and try it on toast.

Rusty
Reply

Be sure to report back. As much as I love comb honey, I don’t like it plain because of that reason.

Hello_Kitty_
Reply

I noticed that if I put comb honey in my oatmeal, it breaks it down and makes it runny. Must be those active enzymes. To avoid having soupy oatmeal, I overcook ’til it’s thick enough to hold a spoon up on end. The heat from the oatmeal probably destroys the enzymes, but the honeyed oatmeal sure is delicious.

Hello_Kitty_
Reply

Forgot to mention, I don’t cook the comb honey with the oatmeal. It’s just a garnish, placed on top at service.

Phillip
Reply

I put some cut comb honey on a cracker with some blue cheese yesterday and holy jumpin’ Moses was it ever good. I did not expect that combination to work, but it was crazy with flavour, like nothing I’ve tasted before. For a split second it tasted like grape soda but then took off into something else I can’t describe. I did the same thing with a cheese called Red Leicester, a cheese that’s similar to Old Cheddar but more crumbly. That was good too. I also had some chipotle smoked goat cheese and cut comb on a garlic baguette and that was incredible.

It was just me, my special lady friend and another couple getting together for some simple food and a game of Catan, nothing fancy, and that blue cheese and honey was the highlight of the night. I can understand how upscale restaurants go for that kind of thing and can charge premium for it. It was certainly a new experience for me.

I recommend it to anyone who hasn’t tried it yet.

(Some of this comment was copied and pasted from a comment I left on another website. I just want to spread the word. Blue cheese and honey — what a killer combination.)

Aroha
Reply

Hi. In New Zealand where I live we always ate our manuka honey from the comb. It came in wooden boxes of about 1 kg in weight and we used to eat it on its own and spread on hot ham slices for dinner. Whenever we were sick as kids we were given a shot glass of heated whiskey, honeycomb and squeezed lemon juice to help with sleep and I still do it for my children now, we really believe in it and would much rather give something natural that works than some over the counter remedy full of chemicals.

I would love to taste your American honeycomb sometime to see how different it tastes.

Sergey
Reply

As a kids we just chew honeycomb and leftover wax functions as a bubble-gum substitute. Honeycomb honey was considered to be a “proper” honey. It was in Soviet Union (and we did not have a bubble-gum). Here in US, my American girlfriend introduced me to this “honeycomb spread” on the hot toast. I have to admit that I did not try yet because eating melted wax was sounded strange to me, but I will try, promise!

chris
Reply

My mom brought a wood box of comb honey from Australia to southern California for me where I live. It was the best honey I ever had. I ate it straight from the box. Now I want to have my own hives and make it in this way, with the basswood boxes. I am having a hard time finding info on the web. If anyone knows some sites that have info and/or equipment please let me know. Thanks

Rusty
Reply

Chris,

Here’s a confession. You are the first person I’ve told the whole story. I started this website so I could teach people how to raise bees in such a way that they will fill basswood sections boxes with honey. It’s an art more than a science. It’s my favorite thing about beekeeping. And, to me, it’s the only way to eat honey. After I started the site, though, I realized most people aren’t interested in it, which is why you can hardly ever find it for sale even if you’re willing to pay a small fortune.

If I thought people were interested, I might still write a series on it. The thing that’s tricky is that bees don’t want to store honey in squares and the only way to coax them into doing it is by keeping them on the verge of swarming . . . always just a breath away from leaving. It’s lots of work, but worth it. I produce comb honey in section boxes every year and I don’t intend to stop. I just don’t write too much about it.

Anyway, for now, you can buy equipment at Walter T. Kelley Company (way too expensive) and you should read Honey in the Comb by Eugene E. Killion. I don’t agree with everything in the book, but it’s close enough to get you started.

Mark H
Reply

Rusty… Hello,

First, I’m sure I speak for many who quietly read and read and never post (like me until now) when I say, thank you so much for your site overflowing with useful, well-written, and good-natured words on bees. It’s already been hugely helpful in filling in gaps (big ones) in my knowledge, and fascinating besides.

After having bees for about 3 years I got out of them for about 10, and just last month got back in again with 3 new hives (from packages) in the back pasture. Fun stuff.

Second (getting on topic), I have two requests…

1. I officially request that you write a “serious”, as you called it, on basswood comb honey production – I for one have become strangely interested for a number of reasons. Anyone else…?

2. Would someone PLEASE get Aroha’s mailing address in New Zealand and send her some “American Comb Honey” that she’d like so much to try… What a simple and wonderful wish. Come to think of it, if someone gets me her address I’ll go find some and send it to her MYSELF. It’s the least I could do as a gesture of international goodwill toward our faithful friends in New Zealand.

Thanks. Mark

Rusty
Reply

Mark,

You don’t know what a serious is? Well, me neither. It took me a while to figure out what you were talking about. But okay, I’ll see what I can piece together in the way of a serious series.

As for Aroha . . . If you are out there, Aroha, you can send your mailing address to me using the “Contact Me” form for privacy. And I will make sure our friend Mark here knows where to send your comb honey . . . seriously.

Mark H
Reply

Hi Rusty,

Thanks for posting back on my comb honey request. I’ll keep an eye out for if and when you have something to share regarding that.

Sorry for the confusion over “serious”. I should have assumed in context that you meant “series”. Thought maybe you were coining a new noun form of “serious” meaning: a straight forward, no-nonsense instructional article. Maybe you did… I kind of like it. :)

And if you hear from Aroha in New Zealand let me know – thanks for mentioning that in your post. That would be neat.

Thanks again, Mark

Rusty
Reply

Mark,

Thing is, I like it too. I’m always making up words when I can’t find the right one, and I think “serious” as you defined it, “a straight forward, no-nonsense instructional article” is perfect. It’s not the first time a typo has turned into something really good (or really funny). So . . . a serious on comb honey production is on my agenda. I’ve been thinking about it for about three years, but it’s complicated. I’ve developed a system that works great but it will take a number of posts to map it all out. For example, just folding section boxes is a whole post. Selecting the hives with APUs that will do the job is tricky too. I’ll work on it.

Rusty

Markus
Reply

Where can you get some honey combs? They are really rare here where I live. And I was wondering where do you have your hives because I can’t come up with a good place to have it.

Rusty
Reply

Markus,

Sorry, I do not sell honey.

Sarah
Reply

I have my hive a few feet in front of a large tree. The tree acts a wind-breaker in winter and provides afternoon shade in summer. My hive faces south because I read it is suppose to. I am not sure why.

Nancy
Reply

Markus –

Find a Farmers Market in your area. Stop by and see if any of the farmers have honey for sale. If they don’t have comb honey, ask if they know a beekeeper who does.

While you are there, buy something – a winter squash, some kale, late tomatoes or chile peppers. Most of us can’t make a living just selling honey.

Unless you are really really urban, your County has an Agricultural Extension Service. That office can put you in touch with a local beekeepers’ organization.

Nan

MOCAR
Reply

Hi Rusty, et al.

I’ve often heard there are no stupid questions, only stupid people asking them. So here goes one.
Each morning I drink a cocktail of healthy juices, supplement powders, and other healthy ground seeds, and top it off with a tablespoon of local honey. I contacted one of the local bee farms that supplies some of the Whole Foods Markets I frequent (I’m in Houston TX), and the owners introduced me to comb honey. They place a chunk of comb in mason jars filled with liquid honey. I bought a case, and keep the extra jars in the freezer (on their instruction).

I mashed the comb with the external liquid honey. Each morning I nuke (on 30%) the jar so the combination will essentially become soft enough to spoon out a serving. Then I blend it all in a mug with a hand spinner (Starbucks Via Mix mug, a seriously ingenious contraption). The cocktail goes down pretty smoothly until I get to the bottom, where as you can guess, some of the wax accumulates. So I just toss it back and get most of it down. I notice that the spoon I use to manipulate the honey gets coated with wax that dries on it quickly, and that got me wondering the following (long way to the question — I apologize): does the wax coagulate in my body anywhere and could it cause gum up problems in my system?

Rusty
Reply

Here’s a short answer to your long question. Beeswax is indigestible to humans. It leaves in the same format it went in. It doesn’t hurt anything, but neither do you get any food value from it. Wax (either beeswax or paraffin) used to be used in chocolate coatings to make them shiny. Paraffin and beeswax are both “neutral” and pass through your digestive tract unchanged.

Sharon
Reply

Hi Mocar,

Reading through your post I feel inclined to invite you to not “nuc” the honey. A few years ago I did an experiment with 3 plants all rooted from the same mother plant and all sitting side by side on the counter. One I fed water that had been boiled in a microwave oven; one was fed with water that had been boiled on the stove and a control plant that was fed unboiled water. Within a few months the results were so obvious that I no longer have a microwave in my home. So, if the microwaving destroyed the properties of water such that it interfered with the plant’s ability to grow and thrive…….I question just what those energy waves would do to the enzymes and other beneficial aspects of the honey. Food for thought anyway…….

Robert
Reply

There is nothing I love more than someone who has no idea why or how something works performing and experiment with said device. There is no way water boiled in a microwave is chemically different that any other boiled water or any other water for that matter. Also, three plants do not constitute a viable experiment. Perhaps 10 plants in each category would be sufficient to notice a trend. Not to mention the possibilities of a weak plant to start with and soil differences, sunlight and other factors that would have to be regulated with extreme precision. You also never mentioned what the results were. Wholly unscientific and basically meaningless. Three plants indeed. Incidentally, I still own a microwave oven.

George
Reply

So, I’ve heard this before, only it was second hand. Besides the obvious “sample of one” issue, I need to ask – how hot was the water when the plant received it?

Diane
Reply

I’ve recently started keeping bees and although I’m not taking any honey this year I have tidied up the hive a little and acquired a few chunks of honey and comb. I’ve had a nibble but the wax is too chewy – but I will not try a little on hot toast as you’ve made it sound utterly delicious.

Tracy
Reply

Hi Ya’all — Your comments are such sweet fun, as I sit chewing my honey gum, and running to the kitchen to try goat gouda, round cracker, and honeyinthecomb!

Thanks for helping me find simple joy in sharing! Love to Laugh.

Abigail
Reply

Eating honeycomb? I thought it’s bees home… I’ve never saw those sold here in Erie, PA? Anyone know where I can buy those locally? I’d really love to try some!!!

Rusty
Reply

Abigail,

Honey bees use wax combs for many things, including raising young, storing pollen, and storing honey. The type we eat has only had honey stored in it, and is tender and light colored. Check your local farmer’s markets or call your local bee club. Someone will know where to find it. It’s great stuff!

Wayne
Reply

Rusty

Interesting reading!

As a kid I ate lots of wooden boxed honeycomb. Recently I found some in a tourist shop and bought it. It was terrible. No wooden box and the honey was not good tasting but the worst part was the wax. It was like taking a bite off a bar of paraffin (though I have never done that) I had to spit it out though I had never done that before. This comb was not formed in the container but cut from a large piece and boxed in plastic.

My questions:

First, do beekeepers today not start the process with preformed combs from paraffin?

Second, today I extracted some honey from a natural hive in an underground irrigation valve box. it was all natural. The honey was wonderfully flavored and the wax melted in my mouth. It was barely noticeable except for the added flavor and texture. How do you account for this difference?

Please continue your column. I believe I am going to become a beekeeper.

Wayne

Rusty
Reply

Wayne,

I’m not sure I understand your first question, but beekeepers do not now, nor did they ever, start honeycombs with paraffin. The bees start and complete the combs with their own secreted wax.

I suspect the honeycomb you purchased from the tourist shop was old. Natural beeswax contains volatile oils, which is one of the reasons it burns so well. Over time, many of these oils evaporate from the wax and what is left is hard and brittle. To be really tender and tasty, comb honey should be eaten during the first year or so. I have eaten much older comb honey (my own) but I stored it carefully to limit its exposure to air.

When you took the natural honey from the hive, it was obviously new and fresh. I’m sure it was age of the comb that accounted for most of the difference in texture. Differences in taste of the honey itself is more dependent on the flowers from which the nectar was collected.

Wayne
Reply

Rusty,

Thanks for the thorough and insightful answers to my questions.

Last night I offered my daughter and grandchildren some comb. This was a great experience that was a first for them. Watching them eat comb by the spoonful and not even considering spitting anything out was a joy. I feel like it was a meaningful Christmas present for them and me.

I am serious about the beekeeping and have a book “Beekeeping for Dummies” which I am reading now! May I pose questions to you in the futures that i can not find answers to in the book?

Thanks again, Wayne

Rusty
Reply

Wayne,

Ask away. Sometimes it takes a few days for me to answer; I get swamped with questions at certain times of year.

I started beekeeping just so I would have a steady supply of comb honey. Nothing else that comes straight from nature could possibly taste so good!

Wayne

Rusty,

Yours is only the second time I have participated in a blog in my life. I connected to it buy asking a question on Google. I have since discovered it is part of a very attractive and substantial website devoted to bees. Redirect me to a more appropriate place if this “How to eat Comb” string is not the correct place for non-comb questions.

After relocating the bees from my irrigation box I have leftover comb honey that was rightfully their winter food. It is in comb form in a plastic container occupying a full shelf in my refrigerator. I would like to feed it back to them as needed. How should I do that???

Wayne

Rusty

Wayne,

You can attach your questions to any post you are reading or the most recent one. It doesn’t really matter.

Before I can answer the question on how to feed the honey back to the bees, tell me what you did with them. You said you relocated them, but into a hive or someplace else? I have to picture it to answer correctly.

Wayne
Reply

Rusty

Almost a year ago bees decided to take residence in a green plastic subsurface irrigation valve box I had topped with a piece of 2-inch thick foam insulation. There was a small hole that they used as an entrance/exit. I noticed them but did not have time to address the situation.

Weeks and then months passed. I knew I would someday have a problem which would require me to work on the valves. Therefore, I would have to move or kill the bees. The later was not a choice.

Have no experience with bees I went to the net. I learned a little about bees and saw various bee hive pictures and plans. I constructed my version of a top-bar hive. Time passed. Suddenly a valve malfunctioned and would not turn off. I shut off the water supply and promptly purchased a very cheap veil and smoker.

This week I moved the bees. I pried the foam top loose and lifted it. The brood and pollen combs and a couple honey combs came with it but most of the honey combs broke loose and stayed in the valve box. I cut the foam so that it would fit exactly in the width of the hive and placed it where the top bars would normally be. It fit nicely leaving 30% of the top open. I then move as many honey combs into the hive as would fit. I stood them upright so that most of both sides were open to the bees. I placed top bars to complete closing the top, and replaced the cover.

The balance of the honey combs, perhaps 20 pounds, are in my refrigerator, except what we ate.

We live in the Mojave Desert where climate extremes exist. January and February will have 20 degree nights and 50-60 degree days with only a few blossoms occurring.

Sorry to be so long winded, Wayne

Rusty
Reply

Moving the rest of the honeycombs into a top-bar hive is fairly easy. Take a top bar and tie a comb to it. I usually use kitchen twine; some people use rubber bands, dental floss, or whatever you have available. Tie one comb per bar and put them in the hive. Normally the bees will connect the comb to the top bar and then chew through the twine and get rid of it. In no time, the bees will have fixed it up to their liking and you will be able to inspect the hive like normal.

Rick
Reply

My friend keeps bees and does the mash and strain method for extracting honey. This leaves a honey-soaked beeswax mess which is like chewing gum but much better. It’s great to dig out handfuls and chew on for a while then spit out the wax. Definitely an outdoor eating activity. Yummy but messy. Pull a gob, chew, enjoy, spit, repeat.

Thanks for the website.

Rick
Reply

Question regarding last post. Would the bees benefit from having this honey, wax mess left over from honey extraction placed near or in their hive for reuse? I assume they would use the honey again. How about the wax?

Rusty
Reply

Rick,

If you give this crushed comb back to the bees, they will clean it up and store the remaining honey. They may re-use some of the wax, but often they just leave it it a pile—it depends on the time of the year and their current need for wax.

The beekeeper needs to be cautious when feeding crushed comb in a container because if honey pools at the bottom of the container, bees can get stuck in it and drown.

Rick
Reply

Thanks for the advice and the website.

Eric Weller
Reply

Rusty,

Does the cut comb need to be frozen to kill any eggs or larvae from wax moths or hive beetles? If not, what is the longest cut comb can be stored before it starts tasting funky?

Rusty
Reply

Eric,

I always freeze my frames of comb honey as soon as I remove them from the hive. Overnight works, or until the comb is frozen all the way through. Once this is done, it will remain fine for years as long as you keep it covered and dry and away from pests that could re-infest it.

Robert
Reply

I stopped by the local apiary to get some frames for my hives (I will make any part of the hive except the frames. The unassembled frames are too cheap to try to make some) and I saw some comb honey laying on the counter. It was just cut comb not section. None the less, I asked about it and was told it was last fall’s honey. My wife loves comb honey so I picked one up. When I got home I noticed a package of Nutter Butter Crème Patties. Not the peanut shaped ones, the wafer ones. I like them…I like honey, soooo I cut a piece of comb and placed in on a cookie. Definitely worth trying. Mmmm

Scott
Reply

I would like some more suggestions on comb honey uses. I liked the cracker and blue cheese recommendation. I sell comb honey at our farmers market and I’m looking for easy ways to provide samples for my customers. I can’t easily make toast or oatmeal but can definitely provide crackers and cheese. I’ve found most people have no idea what to do with the comb. I need to try the basswood boxes since currently I sell it in the plastic viewable containers.

Rusty
Reply

Scott,

I put a request for ideas on my front page, but so far no one has answered. Most people I know put it on biscuits, toast, or crackers and cheese. For samples, I think the cheese and cracker is the best. I also like it on rye bread. You could cut up squares of rye bread (not toasted) and try that, but some folks may not like rye. Maybe just plain whole wheat bread? Or bagel pieces? Or make a peanut butter and honey comb sandwich and cut that into pieces. This is making me hungry.

Daniel
Reply

Scott, I think we all owe a debt to Phillip’s original post about honey and bleu cheese! I just read the post and tried some comb with some crumbled gorgonzola I had on hand (just a really strong type of bleu cheese), and it was fantastic – the two tastes go wonderfully together. I’ve got to do some experimenting!

Richard Lercari
Reply

I would like to start a conversation with you about comb honey. I am a chef and beekeeper.

Richard Lercari
Reply

Message directed to Scott but open to anyone.

Rusty
Reply

Richard,

I would love to hear your thoughts. I believe comb honey is under utilized.

Richard Lercari

Randy,
Since I’ve joined this blog (just a few days ago) I have been reading the posts and following their leads.
I could not agree with you more. Including an older post where you talk about the value of drawn comb to beekeepers
As a chef, I feel that the modernist use of comb honey — beyond cheese and toast has yet to be explored.
So I set out to offer a chefy friend and others an uncut half frame of honey. This led to needing a display board to hold the comb…

Amy
Reply

Hi Scott, I see it has been many months since your question about how to provide samples to your customers, but I thought I’d share this idea in case it may be of use to you. The North Carolina Zoo has local beekeepers provide honey samples to zoo-goers as they tour the honeybee exhibit. One family “My Daddy’s Honey” provides a honey sample on a single oyster cracker, you know, the ones to sprinkle in your soup. Perhaps you could have some 1/4 in squares of sharp cheddar cut & ready to top on each oyster cracker, and then a very small portion of comb honey on top for customers to sample comb honey.

Jordan
Reply

If you get some comb with crystallized honey in it I find that to be very good to eat just by itself. The crystals don’t squeeze out of the wax so easily as liquid honey, so it all chews up together, a real treat! You can just scrape the outer comb off and leave the foundation on the frame so the bees can re-use it. I don’t know about selling it that way but it sure is good to eat if you keep bees!

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