‘Olena & Ginger Infused Honey



Recipe and photography by Lily Diamond of Kale & Caramel.
Before I can name them, I smell ginger and wet earth, wild susurrations of the dense jungle that runs along Honopou Stream. This is where I come to remember. Here, in the quietness of water and green and soil, there is nowhere to turn that does not remind me I am also of this land.
My feet sink into soil infused with decades of ginger root, air perfumed with spice rising upward to touch leaf-refracted sunlight. Birds call. Water hammers relentlessly over rock. Lauhala branches murmur. White ginger blooms, defiantly. I am home.
Later, I infuse Kula honey with the most potent roots of the land I can find: Fresh `olena (turmeric) for protection and healing. Ginger for strength. Shades of gold and orange filled with curcuminoids, anti-inflammatories, antibacterials, digestive aids. Drizzle over fruit and yogurt. In hot water for a potent tonic. On toast. Sweet and spicy. Wild.
Course: Side Dish
Author: Lily Diamond


  • Knife or Vegetable Peeler
  • Knife or Fine Grater
  • Food Processor or Mortar and Pestle
  • Strainer (optional)


  • 1 Cup Filtered Honey
  • 1 ½-inch Piece Fresh 'Olena (turmeric) Root
  • 1 ½-inch Piece Fresh Ginger Root


  • Using a knife or vegetable peeler, scrape the skins of the `olena and ginger from the root and discard.
  • Finely grate the roots, or slice them into very thin pieces and place them in a small food processor or mortar and pestle.
  • Grind or process until the roots are finely ground. Mix with honey and let infuse, covered, out of the sun, until the desired potency is reached (1-7 days).
  • After infusing, leave roots in honey, or strain out, as desired. Use in every way you’d normally enjoy honey.


`Olena contains powerful natural dyes that will stain all they touch—including your skin and all kitchen utensils and surfaces.