Featuring Debbie’s Honeybees
It was a complete surprise when my husband and I received a precious gift of honey from Debbie who has a horse ranch and also keeps bees. I was nearly speechless when he pulled this gorgeous jar out of the gift bag.
Deb even took an adorable picture for the label. Her honey has the most incredible carmel color and the flavor is so much more complex, sweet and flowery than store bought honey. Once I tasted it, I had to know more about it so I wrote to Deb and she graciously emailed back with her story of how this all came about. I would like to include the email below in case anyone is curious! And to honor Debbie’s little worker bees, I wanted to start a cooking project using honey as a main ingredient.
Here they all are in one post for easy reference. Click on the recipe title for a link to more photos and the recipe. (I’ll have two more recipes to include which will be using the honeycomb and also a refreshing cocktail.)
To start things off, a lovely little appetizer bite. They’re petite, crisp & light. The brie adds a creamy roundness, the pancetta provides a salty crunch and the sweet honey brings these flavors all together…it’s a perfect flavor and texture combination.
In the mood for something fresh, filling, low calorie, low carb and DELICIOUS? Then, give these a try.
Warning: They’re addicting - I could eat the whole plate.
Paired with Deb’s honey, these two ingredients are a match made in heaven and I am in love with this sauce.
You can use this for oven-baked BBQ, grilled or smoked meats, dipping sauce and it’s fantastic as the sauce for BBQ Chicken Pizza!
Something from the ocean and one of my favorites. Toss in some asian noodles and a few veggies and you have, well…you can see for yourself. YUM!
Hugs to my friend Holly who baked this and brought it over to photo. So delicious!! I would definitely suggest this for any type of party, get together, or a gift for someone special. It’s a delightful pound cake and easy to make!
So, I have 2 more posts coming to add to the Honey Project. This is the main sweetener I use in my household and it’s an everyday food for us. I can’t say enough about how thrilled we were to get to enjoy this honey.
THANK YOU, DEBBIE!!!
And I want to share Debbie’s email to me in case your curious about her bees! Her photos are included below, as well. (I’ve edited out portions not about the honey.)
Hello Sara,And, I’m so glad you enjoy the honey!You are welcome to mention the honey in your blog. My Dad, Ken Caldwell, will be 90 years old in a month or so, and he’s the one who has his bees at our Horizon Quarter Horses farm. Dad has several friends who have some hives here too, and help him with the heavy lifting of the job and processing the honey. Dad still comes out with his friends to check the hives, install the mouse shields he designed for the hives, and helps with honey harvest & processing. Dad has a whole network of honey buyers that usually buy him out pretty quickly each fall! He always makes sure his family has enough honey for themselves and to share some with friends.Dad also invented a type of bee vacuum to help collect swarms in the Spring with minimal damage to the bees. Dad still collects a number of swarms each Spring himself that are near his Lakewood neighborhood to help with re-populating hives at the farm. Many of the colonies winter over, but there is always some attrition.The bee yard is located in a great spot where the bees have immediate access to our alfalfa/grass fields, and our irrigation pond and nearby ditch for water. Neighbors in the area also have some alfalfa fields, as bees will fly up to 2 miles to collect nectar and pollen. We stagger our alfalfa cuttings between fields, so there is almost always an area of the field blooming throughout the summer.The dandelions are the first thing to flower in our area, and they save the day for the bees when their own winter food stores are lean and until other plants bloom in the Spring. I never have the heart to mow any dandelions in my yard!The bees will seek out any new blooming flower, including grains, trees, and various weeds, (attached photos,) throughout the Spring and Summer. I believe this is why I no longer have the degree of difficulty I used to with my own inhalant tree, grass & weed pollen allergies that used to be crippling with as much time as I spend outdoors. The honey is about as local as one can get when it’s in my literal backyard! I’m being immunized daily when I enjoy the honey in my tea! With only a little help from a daily anti-inflammatory spray, I rarely take anti-histamines any more and virtually forget I have allergies!One tip Dad taught me is how to manage the honey when it goes to sugar. We have a large Styrofoam cooler container with a 15 watt light bulb installed in the lid. The sugared honey jars are placed inside, the bulb plugged in and the honey is usually back to its delicious liquid form by morning without denaturing.We enjoy the honey to replace sugar in tea and as a delicious condiment on any bread item. My husband has used honey to replace corn syrup in some recipes.Thank you for putting together such a fun blog—I can’t wait to try some of the recipes! You are so talented!Bye for now,Debbie