This week we harvested honey. We didn’t get a huge amount, but we did enjoy the process and the opportunity it gave us to connect to our local landscape. Each bite of our honey contained a story about our surroundings. We could even taste the forest in it!
We did our honey harvest the old-fashioned way. After getting honeycomb from our hives (we wish we had pictures of that, but it’s hard to get pictures when you’re in a full bee suit or you’re far enough away to be safely out of harm’s way), we had lots of sweet, sticky honeycomb.We put the honeycomb in a strainer and put the strainer over a bowl. Using a spoon, we smashed the honeycomb to release the honey from the cells. Then we let it sit overnight. In the morning we were rewarded with a bowl full of honey. We enjoyed some on our toast for breakfast. We saved some for some recipes we want to try out. And we put some in small jars with little bits of honeycomb to give as gifts to our neighbors and friends.
What’s so Special About Raw Honey?
Raw honey is honey in its purest form. Unlike the commercial varieties found in conventional grocery stores, it hasn’t been heated above 115 degrees Fahrenheit. These over-processed varieties have lost many of their beneficial enzymes. To enjoy the benefits of honey, you need to consume raw or unpasteurized honey.
So what are the benefits of raw honey? It’s loaded with vitamins and minerals . . . B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and vitamin C. Along with magnesium, potassium, calcium, and a number of other important minerals. Honey supports good bacteria and has healing qualities. It can even help you keep your cholesterol down.
Keep it Local
It’s even better if you can get local honey. Local honey aids in allergy treatment and helps desensitize you to local pollen. And you get to know you are supporting local farmers and businesses. And local honey connects you to your local environment. As mentioned above, we could taste our local forest in our honey.
Join us next week as we cook some fabulous recipes from our fresh, raw, local honey. We’ll treat you to honey lemonade, orange/beet honey salad, roast pork tenderloin with a honey finish, and honey applesauce cake. It was a fabulous meal and we can’t wait to share!