My in-laws were recently in France sorting my husband’s late Auntie Marianne’s affairs. While there they made two discoveries. One: Auntie M. took it upon herself to edit the books she read. Incorrect spellings and dropped punctuation were fixed with her red pen. Two: She had vats of local honey sitting in the cellar. Honey as thick and rich as creme fraiche caramels and flecked with bits of the forest from which it came. Everyone got a kilo upon their return.
Honey is a staple in my home. I love it. Runny, set, manuka, clover, English wildflower, Scottish heather–I’ve got it all. But this new honey, Auntie Marianne’s garrigue honey, really is the bee’s knees. Other than enjoying it in my tea, I wanted to bake something special with it.
Last year, a dear friend of mine gave me an old cookbook called More Honey in the Kitchen. It was written by Joyce White who was a cookery demonstrator and lecturer in beekeeping. The book was illustrated by her grandchildren and published in 1991. It could not be any more charming if it tried.
Today I baked a honey marmalade cake from it and it was perfection. Below is the recipe. I’d like to think Ms. White would have been proud and Auntie M. would have approved.