Honey spoons are a delicious way to add sweetness to drinks such as hot tea. Some people also use them as individual treats, giving them to children instead of traditional candy. They can be made or purchased and can make an excellent gift item for the do-it-yourself fan who likes to give unusual gifts. Although there are some differences in style, in general honey spoons are dipped in honey that has been cooked in such a way that it will harden when it cools.
The main component in honey spoons is honey, but other ingredients are added to the recipe as well. Sugar is usually added, which is necessary in order to be able to get the honey to the crackle stage, the point at which it will harden. A bit of vinegar and some water are also important ingredients. Many people also choose to add a bit of additional flavoring to the recipe, such as lemon essence, cloves or cinnamon, to enhance the natural honey flavor.
When making honey spoons, the ingredients are combined in a pan and cooked until a drop of the mixture forms a hard ball when dropped in cold water. This change, which indicates the mixture has reached the crackle stage, ensures that the honey will harden after it cools, which is a requirement for making honey spoons. If the crackle stage isn’t reached, the honey won’t harden and the spoons cannot be stored or transported.
After the mixture has reached this point, the flavoring, if any, is mixed in. The mixture is then allowed to cool for a bit, but not so long that it begins to get hard. Sturdy plastic spoons are most often used at home to make honey spoons, but any kind, including wood or metal, can be used. Commercially-made honey spoons are often a wooden stir-stick set into a spoon-shaped bit of hardened honey. When it cools the honey itself becomes the spoon, and the honey dissolves when the spoon is used, leaving just the stick behind.
The spoons are dipped into the honey mixture so that the lower section is completely covered with honey. These can then be placed on a flat, buttered surface, such as a greased cookie sheet, where they are allowed to cool all of the way. Once the honey spoons have cooled, they are typically individually wrapped for later use. A dozen or more can be placed together in an attractive cup or mug and given as a gift to a tea lover.