I remember buying honeycomb with my mom at a farm stand as a child. I learned recently that a lot of people have never tried honey in the comb. What!
I guess I better get to baking. We’ve been on this whole grain kick, but I think this is asking for some buttery, white flour-y scones, don’t you?
Thanks, honey, for taking all the stings.
(No, the stings don’t happen too often but we had one angry hive this week.)
Since we recently took our first jar of honey from the bees, I decided we should make something a little extra special with some of that honey. What could be more special than homemade ice cream? And what better day to do this than yesterday, the longest day of the year (not to mention it got up to 79 degrees for us and our tomatoes).
While Jess and Levi were at work I prepared a simple mixture of four ingredients: organic cream, organic whole milk, honey from our backyard, and two vanilla beans.
Yes, we like to do some things old school around here. Ice and rock salt and man power.
Clementine helped oversee Levi’s work. He insisted he do all the cranking, which was fine by me.
And then she took a nap because it kind of takes forever to make ice cream.
We peeked inside 3 or 4 times before finding this.
Yes, it does taste as good as you imagine. Better, even.
I used this recipe.
And Jess is celebrating extra. Now that I’ve tasted the rewards of all the work we’ve put into the bees, I don’t want anything to go wrong so I’ve agreed we could fit another hive or two into the yard. I’m so proud of her for keeping these bees going through their first year, and now we have two busy hives pollinating the neighborhood and making our lives a little sweeter.
It’s obvious we love avocado around here. I’ve heard tales of delicious avocado smoothies and milkshakes. Apparently you can make a mean avocado milkshake combining avocado and sweetened condensed milk. The closest I’ve come to trying that is an avocado bubble tea. I wanted to try something a little healthier. I couldn’t find a recipe that sounded quite right, so I made up my own. Avocado, honey, and lime? Check, check, check. Get out your blender and give it a try.
AVOCADO BANANA SMOOTHIE
2 avocados $1.58
juice and zest of half a lime $0.25
2 bananas $0.50
3/4 cup plain low fat yogurt $0.30
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk of choice (we used non-dairy “coconut milk beverage”) $0.28
3 tablespoons honey $0.18
total $2.91 or $1.03 per serving
Put all ingredients in the blender, being sure to follow the avocado immediately with lime juice to prevent it from turning a hideous shade of brown. Blend until smooth. Add a little extra milk as needed to achieve the perfect smoothie consistency.
Filed under food, recipes
Finally, my wife scored me some rhubarb at the farmer’s market. One week she took this lovely picture and didn’t bring any home. Then she was given specific instructions to PLEASE BRING ME SOME RHUBARB. Somehow I just love the stuff even though I’m fairly certain the only way I’ve ever eaten it is strawberry-rhubarb pie.
Anyway, week after week since they’ve been sold out of rhubarb. That ain’t right. And this week she told quite a dramatic tale of asking one farmer who was sold out, who yelled down to the next farmer to see if they had any left, who yelled down to the next farmer who was also sold out, until finally she got her hands on our precious rhubarb. And she got to tell the guy, “I’ll take everything you’ve got,” and once again they were sold out. This is the stuff seasonal eating is all about.
Clearly this week’s three local ingredients had something specific in mind. In addition to rhubarb, we have:
English lavender grown right nearby in Rochester. Apparently this is a good choice for culinary uses as it is lower in camphor oil and therefore less bitter.
And we get Pixie Honey made right here in Olympia at the co-op, but Jess picked up their Fireweed honey at the market and got to chat them up a little. Apparently they have about a hundred hives at different farms around town! Wow.
Now for the cooking. Nobody ever said our local meal couldn’t be dessert.
For dessert tonight, I had something other than strawberry-rhubarb pie. I had this:
Rhubarb Lavender Crumble, recipe from the kitchn.
I went to the monthly beekeeper class & meeting last week. In addition to all the great information & ordering our bees, there were opportunities to taste honey from various places. I tell you, those beekeepers do not joke around about honey. I tried:
wild blueberry honey (from maine)
locust honey (from pennsylvania)
saw palmetto honey
random whisky bottle-bottled honey (no info on source)
I think my favorite was probably the huckleberry honey, although the wild blueberry from Maine was also delicious. Honey varies based on the geography of the hive & the season. The predominant plants in bloom produce different pollen, which determines the characteristics of the honey. Types of pollen vary wildly in protein and fructose content, and each type of pollen has its own defining taste characteristics. Try blueberry pollen next to poppy pollen, if you have any doubt about that.
To complicate matters further, the same type of blossoms can produce honey with geographical flavor. For example, locust honey can vary wildly based on geography – most locust honey is very light, almost white, but other locust honey (like this stuff from Pennsylvania) was dark and tasted medicinal.
This is a jar of saw palmetto honey in the comb. It looked really beautiful, but I did not love the flavor. But specific honey flavors, even the ones I don’t appreciate, are linked to a specific time and place and it reminds me we have such a wild & diverse world. I am a fan of anything that ties you to a “sense of place,” something that’s not homogenized or available in a mall. And I am a BIG fan of honey.