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Nick Noyes
12-13-2007, 08:23 AM
Does anyone have any information stating weather or not microwaving kills pollen and enzymes in honey. Not looking for opinions just facts. I get asked this question on a daily basis and would like a straight forward answer to give to the public.

Alan
12-13-2007, 03:28 PM
Nick,

Check out March 2007 ABJ article "Does the US Need a Honey Standard?". I don't believe that pollen is mentioned, but it definitely cites a study about heating honey in the microwave and killing all enzymes. The referenced study looks to be in German, but the information you are looking for is in the article. Hope this helps.

Alan

Chef Isaac
12-13-2007, 07:42 PM
Any heat you add will kill enzymes.

riverrat
12-14-2007, 05:09 AM
Any heat you add will kill enzymes.

I would like to add that any heat over a certain temp will kill enzymes. if you heat the honey to around 105 deg you should be fine the problem with using a microwave is being able to maintain the heat at a low enough constaint level to keep it from killing off enzymes

Chef Isaac
12-14-2007, 07:00 AM
Riv:

I would have to disagree. the research for the advocates of the "Raw Cuisine" suggest that any heat about 100 degrees start to kill enzymes.

riverrat
12-14-2007, 07:17 AM
Riv:

I would have to disagree. the research for the advocates of the "Raw Cuisine" suggest that any heat about 100 degrees start to kill enzymes.

oh boy chef here we go with a great debate:p

so your saying that if you have a hive out in direct sunlight that by chance does reach 100 to 105 degrees in the heat of the day the enzymes in the honey are starting to break down before we even pull the super. so technically the enzymes have already been over heated before we pulled the honey. I know Ideally the bees should be able to keep the hive below the 100 degrees if you have helped them where they can ventilate it. I guess I am splitting hairs here but not trying to argue just trying to get enlightened :)

ScadsOBees
12-14-2007, 12:01 PM
Not to be crass, but does the small amount of enzymes that might be destroyed make any difference? Even all the enzymes in honey won't affect your health.

Seems to me this is all an arguement in technicalities, it practicality a few enzymes denatured between 100 and 110f aren't going to make much difference. Now if there is a change in flavor...that is different. If you go past 120, then that can be a problem.

The microwave heats very quickly and unevenly, so it is very very difficult to control the temperature. Also, since it is so quick, the crystallization doesn't leave as well. For the bottom half of a honeybear...I don't sweat it, just pop it in there and nuke away. The part I don't like is how the honeybear leans back funny after a stint in the microwave...

The best is slow longer-termed lower heat. Several days at 100 - 110 below 120 does well.

Rick

Nick Noyes
12-14-2007, 05:10 PM
Just so we are all on the same page.
I am talking about the average consumer (me) throwing a bear in the microwave for 20 seconds so they can squeeze some on toast.
Does this short time in the microwave kill all the good things found in raw honey?

clintonbemrose
12-14-2007, 09:17 PM
I have seen numerous times where a bear was warmed in the microwave and after the 5th or 6th time the honey started to darken. My wife did this and mentioned that the honey tasted different after doing this for breakfast for a week.
Clint

riverrat
12-14-2007, 09:39 PM
Just so we are all on the same page.
I am talking about the average consumer (me) throwing a bear in the microwave for 20 seconds so they can squeeze some on toast.
Does this short time in the microwave kill all the good things found in raw honey?


yes it makes a difference microwaves heat from the inside out. unlike heating the honey in a pan of water there is no control of the heat.

Dick Allen
12-14-2007, 10:55 PM
http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/gen01/gen01565.htm

Nick Noyes
12-15-2007, 09:25 AM
Thanks Dick
If I understood correctly. If you put it in the microwave for short periods (don't burn it) it is not a lot different than warm water on the stove.

Dick Allen
12-15-2007, 11:19 AM
After telling your customers not to overdue the amount of heating by microwaving, you can also tell them the National Honey Board suggests crystalized honey can be reliquified in a microwave:

http://www.honey.com/consumers/honeyinfo/faq.asp?ItemID=49

Chef Isaac
12-16-2007, 04:25 PM
riv:

Sorry this reply is late. Just got home.

Yes, you are technically right. When you heat anything to 100-105, things DO start to break down. Take a banana for example. Try it out, you will see. Yeast is a great example.