Pantry Heroes: Fresh Takes on Honey
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Honey knows no limits. It has no expiration date. It enhances sweet, savory, and spicy dishes. It can be glazed, drizzled, whipped, smoked, and fermented.
 
In recent years, honey has been hotter than ever as chefs experiment with new ways to add it to the menu. With such versatility and longevity, honey may be the ultimate pantry hero, especially as operators try to be more resourceful in their menu creation. 
 
Make the most of honey by capitalizing on other food and beverage trends. We scoped out some fresh takes on this pantry hero. 

 

Mocktail Inspiration

 

Takeout and delivery alcohol isn’t the only big beverage trend of 2020. No-proof, or non-alcoholic, beverages have also seen a major boost. Low- and no-alcohol beverages topped Bacardi's 2020 Cocktail Trends Reportand Google searches for “mocktail” rose by 42 percent last year. 
 
Bars and restaurants looking to add a no-proof drink menu should look to honey for mocktail inspiration. Honey compliments many common drink ingredients, such as mint, basil, berries, ginger, botanicals, cinnamon, and citrus fruits. Whether it’s warming up with a honey Earl Grey mocktail or cooling off with a non-alcoholic honey mojito, honey no-proof beverages are delicious all year round. 
 
Immunity Boosters
 
While no food can prevent someone from catching the coronavirus, some ingredients can support the immune system to help protect people from disease. Honey, especially raw honey, has antioxidants and other properties that strengthen the immune system, soothe sore throats, and may reduce the risk of some forms of cancer and cardiovascular disease.  
 
Chefs can combine honey with other immunity-boosting foods to create delicious meals and treats. Fill up a tortilla or bao bun with red bell peppers and shrimp glazed in honey and ginger. Serve honey baked chicken as an entree. For dessert, whip up a honey lemon tart or honey strawberry cupcakes. 
 
Sweet Heat Pizza 
 
One of the hottest trends of 2020 is, fittingly, hot honey. The National Restaurant Association proclaimed “sweet heat” as the number one flavor of the year, and Datassential found an over 121 percent increase in the term “hot honey” on menus. Hot honey has widespread applications, from a fried chicken drizzle to a shrimp glaze. 
 
Pizza serves as the perfect canvas to play with hot honey. Drizzle hot honey over an elevated cheese pizza to counter the saltiness or subdue the tang of feta, goat cheese, or ricotta. Incorporate it into the sauce to add a touch of sweetness while still bringing the heat to a spicy, meaty pizza. Use it to tie together figs, soppressata, and nontraditional pizza toppings to create bold flavors. 
 
Honey Butter Chips
 
Bringing together honey and fried potatoes for sides and snacks isn’t new to South Korea, but the combo reached new heights back in 2014 with the launch of honey butter chipsAt the height of the Honey-Butter Craze, demand was so huge among young consumers that stores had to limit how many bags were purchased. 
 
Honey butter chips have gone on to inspire treats and fast food items. The chips can serve as a crunchy base or crumbled topping for desserts. Some Korean restaurants in the states have subbed the potato chips for french fries, tater tots, or hashbrowns. Chefs can have fun mixing together their own honey butter to sweeten their comfort food. 

 

Your Sourcing Solution 

 

From healthy treats to decadent eats, a drizzle of honey can instantly elevate a large range of recipes. The pantry hero can add flavor across every menu category.
 
Stay tuned for our final pantry hero and explore our large range of honey on the Dot Expressway. We have honey butter, raw honey, hot honey, and more available to order. 
 
Visit Dot Expressway today to browse our honey selection.