a yemeni businessman, whom mr. khairul got to know on his visit to the country recently was in town. he invited mr. khairul to join him and some other business peeps for a casual dinner.
...and he came back with a metal container full of chunks of honeycomb, courtesy of the yemeni dude!
i stared at it for the longest time. this is the closest i've gotten to an actual honeycomb. to wonder about the honey-production, to imagine the bees in the hives, to admire the beautiful hexagonal structure of the comb - and i stared and stared.
how the black and yellow insects can instinctively build cells of such geometric perfection - what a magnificent creature, bees are! no wonder there's a whole surah in the al-Quran dedicated to the bees - surah al-nahl.
oh, also, i stared too long that i feel like there were actual bees still hovering inside the confines of the comb! hihi. bzzz bzzz.
the honey that is still in the comb is said to be the most natural form of the honey. not processed, not heated, not nothing. pure, and natural.
i asked, "so, camne nak makan?" very, very curious.
and mr. khairul related the yemeni dude's instructions - just grab a small spoonful, mix with water, and drink. okay. seemed easy enough.
we opened the container and poked.
from outside, i thought honeycombs are soft, gooey and spongy, and you have to squeeze the honey out of it. but it was actually quite hard! when i touched the comb, i can feel the stickiness of the honey inside the hard hexagonal quarters.
mr. khairul grabbed a small spoon, and took a bit. he wondered whether it's safe to eat the honeycomb itself without mixing it with water. i was sceptical. pure sangat nanti sakit perut kot. orang yemeni tu suruh mix, mix la!
but you know how men are. and so mr. khairul tried a bit straight from the honeycomb, to the spoon and into his mouth. he chewed and chewed, and finally said macam chewing gum! after he sucked all the sweet honey from the comb, what's left is a gum-like texture that is chewy.
is it really safe to eat it just like that? and what happens after you finish sucking in all the honey? can you eat the comb itself, or must you spit it out?
with the magic of google, i found out that it's perfectly alright to swallow the honeycomb - honey, comb and all. in fact there are a few ways you can eat honey that's still in the comb, from ehow :
- bite off a piece of the honeycomb.
- chew it like gum, sucking out the honey as you chew.
- spit out the wax comb or swallow it.
- it is not harmful to consume it.
spread it like a condiment
- spread the comb, wax and all, on a buttered cracker, hot toast or english muffin.
- let it sit for a few seconds so the wax melts a little and the honey settles into the bread.
- eat it with your fingers.
have it for an appetizer or dessert
- cut a piece of comb.
- place on top of a slice of cheese, such as sharp cheddar, or on top of a piece of fresh fruit.
- eat it as an appetizer or dessert.
i'm gonna try the toast bit! nyum!
thanks honey, for bringing me into this new experience of trying out honey straight from the comb! it's certainly priceless, and you - you're the sweetest!