Honey tastes good in just about any food you want to sweeten. Dehydrated honey tastes and looks good. Grind the dehydrated version into sugar-like crystals or break it into shards, then sprinkle it on top of a dessert. It’s simple to dehydrate honey, but your guests may think you went to a lot of trouble when they see this sweet embellishment.
Spread It Thin
Before dehydrating honey, spread it in a thin layer so the moisture can easily escape. Use a baking sheet coated in parchment paper or a fruit puree sheet that typically comes with most food dehydrators. If you have a dehydrator without a fruit puree sheet, line a standard tray with parchment paper to hold the honey. Spread an even layer of honey that is about 1/8-inch thick on the tray or sheet. Sprinkle ground cinnamon or ground ginger over the honey to add flavor, if you like.
Heating Honey Low and Slow
Honey will burn if you try to dehydrate it at too high of a temperature. If you have a food dehydrator, place the tray in the device and set it to dehydrate at 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Alternately, place a honey-coated baking sheet in the oven at its lowest setting. Leave the honey to dehydrate for as long as 24 hours or until it is hard and dry to the touch. If the honey is still sticky, allow it to continue dehydrating for a few more hours.
Breaking and Grinding
Immediately after removing the honey from the dehydrator or oven, process it into whatever form you intend to use. Waiting too long after removing the honey from the heat will allow it to absorb moisture from the air and become viscous again. Use a spatula to scrape the honey off the baking sheet or tray — as it lifts, the sheet will break into smaller pieces. Break these pieces into slightly smaller shards and store the honey this way, or place the shards into a food processor and grind the dehydrated honey until it has the consistency of sugar.
Storing and Using
Store dehydrated honey in an airtight container to prevent it from absorbing moisture. Move the shards or granules to an airtight container as quickly as possible, seal it and do not open the container unless it’s necessary. Poke honey shards into cakes, cupcakes and even savory foods like mashed yams right before serving for a showy hint of sweetness. Use dehydrated honey granules as you would use granulated sugar. Sprinkle honey granules on confections and serve them immediately, as waiting even 30 minutes can result in nothing but a sticky coating of honey on your sweet treat.
References and ResourcesThe Ultimate Dehydrator Cookbook; Tammy Gangloff et al