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Honey in Flourless Cakes

Asked by Abridge. Answered on 15th February 2012

Full question

I would like to replace white sugar in your flourless cake recipes with honey. Would this work or be a disaster? Thank you, Angela B

Our answer

Unfortunately it is quite difficult to switch sugar completely for honey in many baking recipes and not something we would recommend. Honey has slightly different qualities to sugar and so can affect the finished taste and texture of the cake.

If the cake is made using the creaming method then air will not be incorporated quite as well as the structure of sugar tends to help with beating air into fat. Also if honey is used with egg whites to make a meringue (often used in flourless cakes) then the meringue can be a little more dense or can weep fairly quickly.

Honey will also tend to make cakes more moist and generally if switching some sugar for honey you need to reduce other liquids in the batter to offset. This is not always possible in flouless cakes so they may end up becoming wet. Finally honey tends to colour at a lower temperature than sugar so the cake may tend to scorch slightly, unless the recipe is adapted for oven temperatures and times.

It may be possible to switch some of the sugar for honey in a recipe but you would need to experiment a little and switch a couple of tablespoons at a time.

Bara Brith

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