Turkey is the fourth largest producer of honey in the world, and produces many different kinds. Honey made by bees from the nectar of spesific flowers and tree blossoms, such as linden, mint, ash and orange, are valued for their distinctive flavours and properties.Who discovered honey and when is as much a mystery as the discovery of fire. The earliest
piece of evidence was found in a cave near the Spanish city of Valencia. In a primitive picture scratched on the walls of the Arana cave, a girl collecting honey looks out at us from sixteen thousand years ago. The earliest
written documents about honey, on the other hand, are four thousand year-old
Hittite clay tablets found in Turkey
which tell us that honey was used to cure various illnesses. Moving on
in time to ancient Egypt, honey
itself preserved in tightly closed jars
has been discovered in the pyramids, proving that the Egyptians valued honey so much that
they were determined to take it with them into the next world. Hippocrates, the
father of medicine, believed honey to be
as essential as air and water. So we see that throughout human history this miraculous store of sugar in forms
directly absorbable by the body, minerals, pollen and antiseptic substances has
been eaten, drunk, or applied to the skin. The wax of which the comb is made
has also been
used for innumerable purposes. Although ordinary
honey has been used widely for medicinal purposes, there is one kind of
Turkish honey which can be dangerous. That
is deli bal, or mad honey, which has a bitter flavour, probably deriving from
poisonous plants visited by the wild bees, and can paralyse the central nervous system if eaten in more than tiny quantities. Xenophon's army experienced temporary madness when after crossing the mountains from Persia into northeastern Turkey they ate the honey of Trabzon in the 4th century BC. Turkey is the fourth largest producer of honey in the world, and many regions of the country produce celebrated honeys with varying flavours, depending on the flowers used by the bees for their source. Honey made by bees from the nectar of specific flowers and tree blossoms, such as linden, mint, ash, and orange, can be purchased and are valued for their distinctive flavours and properties. Good quality honey should be made from nectar alone, not from sugar fed to the bees. The popular notion that pure honey should not crystallise is untrue, and instead to discover whether your honey is the real thing you must place 50 grams of honey in a bottle with a 30 ml of water and 70 ml of pure alcohol and shake the bottle well. If a white sediment forms then your honey contains sugar. If it crystallises it is
pure, and there is no need to do the
test. The crystals can be dissolved
by setting the jar in a pan of hot water at 5>~ degrees Centigrade for three hours. Excess heat and below zero temperatures cause honey to deteriorate, at it should be stored in a tightly
closed glass jar awa\ from strong light or in a glazed
pottery jar. Honey has a therapeutic effect in many complaints such as hardening of the arteries, heart disease,
problems of the digestive system, eye infections, hang-overs, anaemia, constipation, coughs and colds. Here are
a few tips and home remedies-.
For sore throat, bronchitis, sinusitis, and bleeding of the gums, try chewing a lump of honeycomb for five to ten minutes. Lighting a candle made of fresh beeswax is also recommended for the same purpose. If you wake up suffering from a hang-over, stir half a cup of honey into the same quantity of lemon and orange juice and drink it. You will feel better almost immediately.
In summer if the heat makes you feel listless, dilute a couple of spoonfuls of honey in a glass of cold water, and you will feel refreshed and revitalised. For insomnia, slowly suck one or two large spoonfuls of honey about half an hour before going to bed, or drink a mixture of one tablespoon of honey and three tablespoons of apple vinegar.
Coughs can be soothed by hot milk or a fruit tea sweetened with honey. Alternatively, honey mixed with carrot or radish juice has a similar effect. If you do not have a juice extractor, cut the carrot or radish in slices, pour the honey over and leave for a few hours, then strain.
Regular doses of pollen, which sticks to the legs of the worker bees as they collect nectar and is gathered in traps at the entrance to the hive, is a reliable cure for for-getfulness.
When dieting eat a tablespoon of honey after meals. This both helps to keep up your vitality and makes you feel satisfied with even a meagre meal! And finally try honey as a beauty treatment. Prepare your own face mask by mixing an egg yolk, half a tea spoon of honey, and a tablespoon of oatmeal, rye meal, or dried camomile. So keep healthy and beautiful on honey!