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London-based writer and cookbook author Hattie Ellis' new book, Honey, sweeps the globe to find the best recipes starring sweet, natural honey. From sweet to savory, appetizer to dessert, if you're a fan of this versatile sweetener, she has a recipe for you. 

London-based writer and cookbook author Hattie Ellis' new book, Honey, sweeps the globe to find the best recipes starring sweet, natural honey. From sweet to savory, appetizer to dessert, if you're a fan of this versatile sweetener, she has a recipe for you. Start from the ground up where honey lives — the honeycomb — with this simple buttermilk panna cotta. 

Honeycomb is one of nature's treats: a gleaming segment cut from the frame in a hive, honey at its most natural. Bees store their honey here in hexagonal wax containers, as if in thousands of little pots. It is quite difficult to buy large pieces of comb. You are most likely to find them in delis, farm shops, honey specialists and gift shops with links to a local beekeeper. Seek them out: honeycomb is so beautiful that you can make a dessert or breakfast special with just a small piece. I also love it on crumpets for tea.

Buttermilk was traditionally the liquid left over from butter-making. Now it is made specifically for its slightly tangy flavor, which works well in a creamy panna cotta alongside the honeycomb. The comb is the honey component of the dish, and the panna cotta is sweetened with sugar. Honey is a precious and powerful spoonful, best used carefully and without overloading its flavor. You can make this the day before you serve it.

Reprinted with permission from Honey