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Kitchen Tip Tuesdays: How to easily melt honey when making homemade bread

My gallon jar of honey is in a semi-solid state (crystallized). This is actually a good thing, since that makes it much easier to measure.

When I'm making bread (like challah, for example!), I measure my honey into a bowl (or the bread machine pan). To be completely honest, most times I just use a long-handled spoon to scoop out the honey, and try to guess on the amount. ;)

My solid honey...

Then I heat up about half of the water that's called for in the bread recipe. I heat the water really hot (maybe even to boiling!) and add it to the honey in my bowl. Sometimes I add salt or sugar or other things that the recipe calls for, but not eggs, flour, or yeast, for sure. ;)

The melted honey!

Then, I get one of my kitchen helpers to come and stir the honey until it melts. Before long, I have some lovely melted honey! I add the rest of the water that the recipe calls for -- only I use cold water this time. This makes the water and honey mixture the right temperature for making bread. And I continue on with my recipe... :)

Homemade wheat bread recipe
Homemade whole wheat bread -- our all-time most-used recipe! :)

Related kitchen tips:

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How to remove excess flour from dough or pastry

Easy way to use natural dough conditioners in homemade bread

Quick and easy homemade bread crumbs

More uses for not-so-great homemade bread

How to add cracked grains to homemade bread

Tips for slicing homemade bread

How to freeze homemade bread

How to deal with sticky pizza dough

Cover with a clean towel and let rise...

To Participate in Kitchen Tip Tuesdays:

Post a kitchen tip in your blog. Link to this post, and then leave your link here, so we know where to find YOU! :) No giveaways or non-tip posts, please!

In order to keep the kitchen tips more easily accessible, posts not adhering to these guidelines will be removed. We need to be able to easily find/see what your kitchen/cooking tip is. :) Thanks for your participation! :)

Leave your tip links in a comment. I'll manually add them to this post!

1. Make your stovetop shine! (Anna)
2. How to cut and wash leeks (Donielle)
3. Frugal source for food grade buckets (Jill)
4. Substitute for canning jars; sub. for vegetable broth (Alea)
5. Simplifying recipes
6. Mexican Style Bar and chopped tomatoes tip (Cheryl B.)
7. 10 non-food uses for vinegar in the kitchen (Tara)

Comments

Where do you find honey in a

Where do you find honey in a semi solid form? I have only ever seen it sold as a liquid.

Tammy's picture

Solid honey

When honey is stored in a cool location (like my kitchen cupboards in the winter time...) it gets crystallized like you see in the picture! :)

Did you know..

Well, it definately makes measuring easier when the honey is solid. But for some reason I feel wierd when I use it at that point! I just got my new big 5 gallon bucket of raw honey. What I do is divide it into 2 quart canning jars with lids, then store the jars in my deep freezer. Freezing honey doesn't effect the quality at all, and it doesn't crystalize one bit. (Until you bring it out and use it for a few months!) But sometimes I just leave it in my freezer and scoop out what I need. It stays nice and firm to scoop!

Great idea!

That's such a good idea. Now if I can just get my honey out of the narrow-necked bottle it has crystallized in, I can use your idea! :) Next time I will put it into a wide-mouth jar as soon as I buy it.

Same problem with honey

Any recommendations for how to get the honey out? It's a large plastic Sue Bee honey container from Costco.

Tammy's picture

Crystallized honey in a plastic jug from Costco

I have had honey from Costco (which is in a milk jug type of container) crystallize. Fortunately, I had already used a couple cups of the honey, and so I used a clean box cutter to slice off the top of the jug. I cover with plastic wrap and scoop out as needed.

If the jug is completely full, you could try putting it in a bowl of warm/hot water and melting some of the honey so you can pour it out! :) Just not too hot of water for plastic, of course... :)

solid honey...

Hi... we keep bees, and sell honey at a farmer's market. This is a very common question we get asked. What we reccomend is that you take a small cooler and put several inches of warm (130-140* ) water in it, and put your honey jar in to soak. The water level needs to be at least the same depth as the honey is in it's jar. Let sit several hours...and when you get done, the honey will be liquified again. If your honey container is larger than a quart jar, you may have to repeat this a couple of times to get all the solids back to liquid. This is especially helpful when you can't get a spoon inside a narrow neck jar.

You don't want to heat the honey above 140*, or you will destroy all the beneficial qualities in the honey. And the plastic shouldn't get heated up above 140* either.

Since I keep my hot water tank set at 140*, I just use hot water from the tap, and change it out as needed to keep up the temp. Sometimes it is neccessary to pack the cooler with other jars to be able to lodge the honey jar in an upright position. Just fill the other jars with the same hot water you fill the cooler with.

Hope that will help you fix your problem!

Tammy's picture

Melting honey

Thank you for that helpful info, Debbie!! :)

Bread making

You talked about making Challah bread. I was reading the recipe and have a dumb question. When it says to let the dough rise in a warm place, what is considered a warm place. On the kitchen counter? Where?

Tammy's picture

Bread rising

Your kitchen counter would work fine, if there were no cold drafts and the room was fairly warm (maybe 75 degrees or so). Our house is never that warm, so what I do it turn on the oven for 1-2 minutes (I set the timer so I don't forget!) and then turn it off. I put the bread in there so it can rise.

The oven doesn't need to be too warm -- and in fact, shouldn't be too warm. Even if the oven isn't hot enough to kill the yeast, having it too warm will make the bread rise really quickly and it might not have as good a texture.

A cooler kitchen (say, 70 degrees or so) will still work for rising bread, but it will take a lot longer for the dough to rise. :) 

ShannonLynn's picture

I turn the oven light on in

I turn the oven light on in my oven and it creates the perfect place for dough to rise!

Tammy's picture

Our last two ovens

Our last two ovens (including the one where we live now) didn't have a window in the door or the option of turning on a light inside (unless the oven door was open). Strange! :)

I have heard that with a gas oven, often the pilot light is enough warmth for bread dough to rise in there, too. :)

Maple Syrup - Not just for pancakes!

Here are 10 of my favorite recipes that feature maple syrup
http://thelocalcook.com/2011/03/22/10-maple-syrup-recipes/

Making Your Stovetop Shine!

Good Morning Tammy!

My post today is how to shine your stovetop naturally without chemicals.

http://anna-thejoyfulwife.blogspot.com/2011/03/make-your-stovetop-shine.html

Thanks for the tip on using your oven to help your bread rise. I will try that next time! :)

Have a great day!

Anna

Tips for Baking in Bulk - Save Time and Money

Hi Tammy! Thanks again for a great place to share tips!

I am sharing a post with tips on saving time and money in the kitchen by baking in bulk, including how to maximize oven space when baking.

Here is the link: http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/save-time-in-the-kitchen-baking-in-bulk/

Get ready for lots of cookies! :-)

Washing Leeks

how to cut and wash leeks!
http://www.naturallyknockedup.com/how-to-prepare-leeks/

Tips for Baking in Bulk - Save Time and Money

Thanks again for hosting, Tammy!

I couldn't tell if this post went through, so please forgive me if this is a "repost."

I am sharing some of my tips for saving time and money by baking in bulk. We have been doing this for years and it has helped things move a bit more smoothly in the kitchen.

My post is at http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/save-time-in-the-kitchen-baking-in-bulk/

See you next week for more tips!

Tammy's picture

Bulk baking tips

I actually already linked to that post last week! :) After your comment, I looked around your blog and saw that post and added it to KTT since it was more of a "tip" than the protein bars. :) I love your suggestions! :)

A tip

I'm sharing my tip for today- it's a frugal source for finding food grade buckets to store bulk nuts, grains, and legumes. Thanks!

http://www.theprairiehomestead.com/2011/03/a-frugal-source-for-food-grade-buckets.html

A Frugal Source for Food Grade Buckets

Hi Tammy!
Today I'm sharing a tip on where to find cheap, food grade plastic buckets in which to store your bulk nuts, grains, and legumes.

http://www.theprairiehomestead.com/2011/03/a-frugal-source-for-food-grade-buckets.html

Thanks!

Vegetable Broth Substitute

Great tip! My honey ends up semi-crystallyzed - usually after someone accidentally puts it in the refridgerator.

My tip is for a vegetable broth substitute: http://www.premeditatedleftovers.com/2011/03/making-do-and-doing-without-substitutes.html

Alea @ Premeditated Leftovers

simplifying recipes

http://goodlookingcook.blogspot.com/2009/01/guacamole.html

Includes tips on cutting back in number of ingredients and still turning out fantastic food. I include and example recipe.

Mexican Style Bar

Hi Tammy :-)

I read through all of the above comments. Yes, the pilot light in a gas oven is enough heat to help dough rise and be in a draft free environment. Just don't turn your oven on to preheat till you've removed the dough! ;-)

This week I am hoping to link up my posting about how to make a 'Mexican Style Bar'.
http://thebzhousethatlovebuilt.blogspot.com/2011/03/mexican-style-bar.html
In it, there is also a bonus tip about chopping fresh tomatoes.

We are currently getting freezing rain. Hope your staying warm!

My tip

Hi Tammy!

I rarely use honey, so I don't have anything to contribute to the conversation this week.

I posted this week about cleaning with vinegar. :)
http://www.feelslikehomeblog.com/2011/03/10-ways-to-clean-with-vinegar-in-the-kitchen/

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