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Author Topic: Creamed honey advice  (Read 14615 times)

Offline Lesgold

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Creamed honey advice
« on: January 15, 2022, 08:40:19 pm »
Hi Folks

I have only made creamed honey once and that was quite a few years ago. Wouldn?t mind making a small batch for my grandkids. I plan to store it in a small fridge that can operate at 50F. Any advice on getting a really creamy, fine grained honey would be much appreciated. Would prefer to make my own seed honey if possible.

Cheers

Les

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2022, 09:46:23 pm »
Les,
As you mentioned, the quality of the creamed honey is based on the size of the crystals. The size of the crystals is based on the seed cream honey.
Find someone selling what you want to make and use it for the seed.
To make 10 pounds of cream honey you need 1 pound of cream honey. In other words, you use 10% seed to make it.
Jim Altmiller
Democracy is 2 wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well armed lamb contesting the vote.
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Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2022, 10:28:21 pm »
Thanks Jim. If possible, I would like to make some of my own seed honey. I have some crystallised honey that I can use for that. My research is telling me that I need to reduce the crystal size by using a mortar and pestle. Amy tips to follow if that process is used?


Offline NigelP

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2022, 12:39:52 pm »
Les,
As you mentioned, the quality of the creamed honey is based on the size of the crystals. The size of the crystals is based on the seed cream honey.
Find someone selling what you want to make and use it for the seed.
To make 10 pounds of cream honey you need 1 pound of cream honey. In other words, you use 10% seed to make it.
Jim Altmiller

JIm as someone who makes and sells a lot of cream honey....the size of seed crystal helps, but the crystals will still aggregate into larger coarse crystals if just left to set. If you can detect ANY crystals in your creamed honey it's not the best creamed honey.
You need gentle agitation to rub crystals against each other to break them down. I have a machine, like a butter churn that works the setting honey for 15 minutes, rests it for an hour and repeats for around 2-3 days until I judge it ready (it should be white, any other shade shows larger crystals present).  The friction of the crystals rubbing against each other is considerable and even when I make it in my garage in the winter with temps around 4C the mixture will read 21-22C due to the heat generated by this friction.
Before I got mechanical I used an oversized  potato masher as this does the same job, but takes effort, 5 minute every 2-3 hours for a few days....

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2022, 03:48:50 pm »
Wow, that sounds like a lot of work. Didn?t realise that you needed that much extra work to get a quality product. Thanks for the reply. Is the machine that you use specifically designed for this purpose, or have you just modified a piece of equipment? I hope that you are getting a good return on your honey for the extra work involved.

Offline NigelP

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2022, 05:12:25 am »
It's a dedicated machine Les, made by Lyson.
Here is  a link to the one I have.....it was much cheaper when I bought it....
https://www.abelo.co.uk/shop/creaming-machines/honey-creaming-and-liquefier-machine-100l/

I think in the tropical Australian heat you would struggle to make good soft set, even with a machine. I have to make all mine in our UK winter as it's too warm in the summer and the end product is nowhere near as good, as everything overheats. Heat is your enemy when making soft set. I wish Lyson would make a creamer with a Peltier cooling system, then it would be perfect.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2022, 05:30:40 am »
I had a look at the Lyson machines today. It?s a pretty big outlay. I?m just going to have a play with a couple of kilos of honey and see how it turns out. I think I should be OK during the winter months but that would be the only time. I will see what happens with my test run using refrigeration and working the honey in the manner you suggested. Local beekeepers do make some so it is possible. For me, it?s just the fun of trying.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2023, 07:17:00 pm »
Just a bit of an update on how the creamed honey process is going. As I only attend markets every fortnight, I don?t need large amounts of creamed honey. I have looked at the Lyson creamer that Nigel uses but I couldn?t justify the expense considering the small amount that I sell. That being said, creamed honey is quite popular and I tend to make a batch up every month. The homemade stirrer is still used and does a pretty good job. It would be nice to get the white honey that Nigel achieves and I?m constantly looking for improvement. Being in Australia has its challenges due to heat. I currently use my camping fridge set at 10 degrees C which is as high a temp that I can achieve. 14 to 16 degrees would be nice but I?ll have to make do with what I have. Once the starter is mixed to a pail of honey, it is placed into the fridge and stirred twice a day for 3 days. It is then bottled into 400 gram jars and stored in the fridge for about two weeks. The honey is then moved into an esky cooler for storage in the house. Even on hot days the creamed honey remains cool. The photo is of a jar that has been in the fridge for about 5 days. In the future I think I will make a specific creamed honey fridge where I can set the temperature precisely.

Offline Kathyp

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #8 on: October 27, 2023, 07:38:11 pm »
That looks like it worked out well.  I had a jar that was perfect and used it for seed for ages.  Always got great creamed honey. Then someone ate it, and all that I had made I'd given away.  Never had quite as nice a crystal naturally again  :sad:
Someone really ought to tell them that the world of Ayn Rand?s novel was not meant to be aspirational.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2023, 07:40:50 pm »
It was a bit of a task but I made my own seed honey initially. I?ve used it now for about a years or so.

Offline NigelP

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #10 on: October 28, 2023, 04:32:31 am »
Looks good Les. Just made my first batch for a long a week or so ago as we are down to snigle digit temperatures.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #11 on: October 28, 2023, 06:39:59 am »
Hi Nigel

Perfect creamed honey weather. How?s that Lyson machine working for you? I could consider buying the cheaper version of the Lyson machine but it doesn?t have a timer.

Offline Ben Framed

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2023, 07:24:14 am »
Looks good Les. Just made my first batch for a long a week or so ago as we are down to snigle digit temperatures.

Les is doing a great job, I agree! I also recall that you make some nice looking creamed honey yourself.
https://beemaster.com/forum/index.php?topic=55086.msg501924#msg501924

Offline NigelP

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #13 on: October 28, 2023, 10:17:23 am »
Les, timer is less important than than the mechanisation. But temp control is quite critical. I usually use my garage when we get temps below 10C.
But the friction creates a rise in temp. For example my garage can be 4C inside but whist creaming there is a steady rise to 22C.....
This is caused by all the crystals rubbing against one another. I think what happens when I do this above 15C the crystals are able to re-aggregate faster than the machine can break them down (see below), you still get a decent soft set but not the best!
Some will say you don't need a machine just a seed of fine crystal (I made my first "seed" with a pestle and mortar). You will get a nice soft set doing it this way but it will be still a little coarse. Reason is as the crystals form they aggregate through electrostatic bonds (very weak) creating larger crystal. What the paddle in the creamer does is work the crystals, rubbing them against each other and breaking them down to the smallest crystal size. This is why it looks so white as it's due to light refraction. Larger crystal sizes look darker.

Online Terri Yaki

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2023, 12:16:58 pm »
You guys are invigorating my taste buds and once I get up and rolling, I'm going to have to try making this stuff. I've bookmarked this thread for future use so I can't lose it. Not too long ago I discovered maple cream if you've never heard of it, I recommend giving it a try. Or maybe not, it should be outlawed. :cool:

https://brookfieldmapleproducts.com/blogs/news/what-is-maple-cream

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2023, 04:39:03 pm »
That maple cream sounds yummy. I shouldn?t be reading this post just before breakfast lol. I hear what you are saying Nigel. The seed honey that I initially made was with a mortar and pestle. I worked it for exactly 1 hour  before I was totally satisfied with the result. That?s what I have used ever since. Looks like you have convinced me about the big advantage of the machine. I do notice when I use my homemade stirrer and the drill, the honey does appear to soften slightly and change colour as it is stirred. I am sure that the crystals of honey are rubbing over each other but only in the confined area around the small paddles. The colour of your soft set is outstanding and is an obvious indication of how well the machine works. Looks like a modified refrigerator will be a summer project before I get serious about purchasing a creamer. I would only be able to use it for about 3 months of the year and make enough creamed honey to last that period of time. The method that I?m currently using allows me to make soft set even in the middle of summer but unfortunately the quality doesn?t match yours.

Offline NigelP

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #16 on: October 29, 2023, 02:58:18 am »
I make a ayears supply during our winter and store in a fridge. It can separate out if kept too warm for too long.

Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #17 on: October 29, 2023, 05:00:42 am »
Good to know. Thanks again Nigel.

Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #18 on: October 30, 2023, 10:53:34 am »
I have a small hand cranked flour grinder that will grind very fine that I use to make seed.
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Offline Lesgold

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Re: Creamed honey advice
« Reply #19 on: October 30, 2023, 04:32:52 pm »
That?s thinking outside the box.