A Lebanese Queen Honeycomb…
Honey, is one of the oldest sweeteners used in villages. Back then it was gathered from rocks, tree trunks, old jars where the bees used to form their honey. Later on most Lebanese villages start to develop beehives, thus most rural households kept bees. Then after beekeeping evolved to become one of the most luxurious hobbies, as an inherited experience of our grand old families.
Bees make honey by harvesting the nectar of plants and flowers; Lebanon is very well known of its enormous variation of flowers and plants, thus Lebanese bees tend to form several kinds of honey with different colors, smells and tastes.
For example, dark honey from oaks, amber spicy honey from thyme, amber wooden taste honey from cedars, light amber citrus honey from orange blossom flowers and so on… Each type of honey is made in different times of the year depending on the season in which the flowers and plants grow.
In many Lebanese villages, honey is said to be “sacred”, where it’s mentioned in the Bible and in the Qur’an. Traditionally, it was used for medical purposes, specifically throat problems and coughing, cosmetic purposes for the skin and as a natural sweetener instead of sugar.
In the Lebanese cuisine it’s used in hot beverages such as coffee and tea, in cooking, salad dressing etc.
A Traditional Misconception:
A traditional misconception about honey; most villagers used to think that honey, because it’s a natural sweetener fits for diabetes. Yet, in fact, honey has more or less the same chemical structure as table white sugar or brown sugar, with the same amount of calories too. Thus, it should not be consumed by diabetic patients, unless it’s incorporated correctly within the diet plan.
Honey Bees harvest the nectar from plants and flowers thus, it can carry on with it bacteria named Clostridium botulinum, that should not be consumed by children below the age of 2 years, because at this age the digestive system is not completely developed to digest and kill such a bacteria leading to a severe infection (the infection in this case is called: Botulism).