Why Shop Small Business Saturday at The Honey Cottage?

Thanksgiving

Why should I shop at a Small Business? Why should I spend more money when I can get it cheaper elsewhere? What difference does it make if I shop at a mom and pop shop? 

These are some of the common questions we hear here at The Honey Cottage. At first, I used to get sad that people did not understand what Shop Small Saturday really means. Yes, you can go shopping at big stores too, but this is the one day that really shows your appreciation for the mom and pop shops that are trying to make a go at having their own business. When we shop small, we are shopping with other small businesses because we know who they are!! We also support other small businesses and beekeepers.  

What I really want you to think about this holiday season; as a small business we get to know our customers. We try to remember what honeys you like, how your kids are doing, how your job is going, and we get excited when your family and friends visit with you!! We are excited when you get to share your favorite things with them. We have had many customers and say you need to give them samples of this, this, and this. At The Honey Cottage we get the pleasure of watching our customers blossom. We get to see the good and the bad days. We get to show you the new things we have and the things we think will wow the people in your life. We get to watch the excitement of new customers opening up honey sticks for the first time or the families who are bringing in their 1-year old to try honey for the first time. The weddings, the births, and the friendships that happen over honey mean something to us! We go home thankful that we were able to get new customers, that the quality of honey speaks for itself. 

I cannot stress this enough; cheaper does not mean better or good quality. When you come to The Honey Cottage you will notice that I am all about samples. You don’t know what you like until you try it!!! As consumers ourselves; we know the frustration of buying something and not enjoying it. Then it either sits as a constant reminder of what a bad decision it was and then gets thrown away. That is why we try very hard to have a sample of all the jarred honeys so that you can taste it yourself. We bee-live in try before you buy. What we have learned is that if you have a honey that you LOVE you will not only come back in for more, but you will use it. We don’t like hearing that honey has gone to waste because they bought it from someone and did not like it. What I love most is watching people light up when they find a honey they like. It makes a big difference when we can say we have helped people find something they actually enjoy. 

Mom and Pop shops are the ones that take the time to talk with you. They take the time to know you, your friends, and family. We are the ones that get to hi five your kids when they have brought up their GPA, when they finally got the hang of potty training, or they took their first steps. We get excited with you when you find out you are pregnant, you finally got that promotion you have been waiting for, or the house you have been saving up for the last three years. We notice when you don’t come back in and you have been a monthly customer. We may not always have your name down to say “Norm”, but we know you by face and we get excited to see you.  

At The Honey Cottage we are a family business and you the customer are apart of our family!!  We hope you will buzz by November 30 and shop with us for Small Business Saturday!!! 

From our hive to yours,

Bee Queen

Green Pepper Honey Soup

Green pepper soup.jpg

                                    Don’t you love fall when you can start eating soup? 

At The Honey Cottage we LOVE the fall season, not only do the leaves change, but we can start eating soup all the time!! It is just the right meal with vegetables, meat, and sometimes pasta or rice! There are some soups that we are able to add honey to and they taste AMAZING! This is a fun twist on our homemade tomato soup. I also enjoy the fact that I can put it all in a crock pot and I only have to check on it periodically. We noticed if we did not cook the meat beforehand that it kind of tasted boiled. I really hope you enjoy this bee-licious soup as much as we do! 

Ingredients: 

1 ½ pounds ground beef 

½ green peppers 

32 ounces of beef broth 

1- 14.5 ounce can of diced tomatoes 

1- 14.5 ounce can of tomato sauce 

1 cup- Cheddar Cheese 

4 ½ cups of beef broth 

2 cups- Brown Jasmine Rice 

¼ cup- Honey 

Directions:  

– In a sauté pan break up the beef and cook for 3-4 minutes; just enough to bring out the flavor of the beef. We do not drain our meat; so if you don’t want the extra fat you can drain it. Add it to the crock pot. 

-Cut up the green pepper into 1 inch chunks and add to the crock pot. 

-Add the beef broth, diced tomatoes, and the tomato sauce. Place lid on the pot and cook on low for about 6 hours. Check on it and stir about every hour.  

-Grate the cheese into a bowl and place in a container for later.  

-About an hour before the soup is done. Cook the rice in a separate pot; add the 4/ ½ cups of beef broth and the 2 cups of brown jasmine rice. Place a lid on top and let it cook on medium heat for about 45 minutes. 

Turn off the crock pot and add the honey, stir the soup, and let sit for five minutes. 

-Set out the bowls; add ½ cup of rice to the bottom, place ¾ cup soup on top, and add ¼ grated cheese to the top.  

-Serve and ENJOY! 

Tips:  

-Instead of rice try this with whole wheat noodles 

Use ground turkey or chicken 

Switch out the green pepper and use yellow pepper if you want more color 

Honey Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

Pumpkin muffins

At The Honey Cottage we bee-lieve fall is an amazing time to enjoy pumpkin EVERYTHING! This is one of our favorite recipes because we also bee-lieve honey and chocolate should cover everything too! What we love most about this recipe is that it is not just for the fall time, you can use it anytime you are in the mood for pumpkin. This is a great muffin to have on the go or for picnics.  If using the wheat berries; grind up the wheat berries and then measure out the 1 1/2 cups. I hope you enjoy this as much as we do!

Ingredients:

½ cup coconut oil (liquefied)

3/4 cup of honey

1 tsp. of vanilla

1 cup of canned pumpkin

1 Tbsp. of pumpkin pie spice 

1½ cups whole wheat flour

1 cup chocolate chips

1 tsp. baking soda

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. Mix together the coconut oil, honey, vanilla, canned pumpkin, and pumpkin pie spice. Then add the flour, chocolate chips, and baking soda; mix until everything is thoroughly mixed. Line cupcake pans with cupcake liners and spray with your favorite cooking spray. Fill the baking cups with batter 3/4 of the way full; makes about 12 cupcakes. Place in the oven and cook for 17-20 minutes or until the tooth pick comes out clean, then pull out of the oven and let cool. Some ovens work differently so make sure to keep an eye on them. Enjoy!

Tips:

  • Try using canned sweet potato for a different flavor
  • Add 3/4 cups crushed pumpkin seeds
  • Add 1/4 cup of ground flax seed

Honey Balsamic Skewers

Honey skewers

How easy is it to add honey to your recipes?

At The Honey Cottage we really try to find ways for people to use honey in their daily life. I really love this recipe because it is super easy and quick to make and can be pre-made to make lunch easier to pack. I have noticed that everyone has a moment where they want things that are easy or light to eat. I really love being able to make these and having them ready for whenever. These skewers can be used as an appetizer, as a snack, or even put with a salad and made into a meal. The other benefit of this recipe is that the honey is used in raw form. This recipe is great with tofu, chicken, or steak too! I hope you enjoy this as much as I do!

Ingredients:

4 Tbsp-Balsamic vinegar

4 Tbsp- Raw Honey

1 cup- ½ inch thick ham cubes

5- Red grape tomatoes

5- Orange cherry tomatoes

5-10- Basil leaves

5-Mozzarella cubes

5-Pitted green olives (optional)

5- Small skewers

Directions:

Mix the balsamic vinegar and the honey in a bowl or container. Cut the ham into 1-inch cubes and place into the balsamic vinegar honey sauce, mix the pieces around to get a nice coat of sauce on each piece, and place into the fridge overnight.

When you are ready to put together;

Wash the tomatoes and basil and place on a plate. Cut up the mozzarella into 1-inch cubes and place next to the tomatoes. Pull the marinated ham out of the fridge.

Take a skewer and push the end through a red tomato, then fold the basil leaf in half and push the skewer through the center of the basil leaf, push the end through a piece of ham, fold another piece of basil and push the skewer through the center of the basil leaf, then place an orange tomato next to the basil, and lastly add a piece of mozzarella to the end.

Continue this pattern with the next four skewers.

Add a green olive to either end of the skewer to add more color and flavor. Serve and ENJOY!

Tips:

-Add sliced up pieces of green or yellow pepper

-Drizzle the tops of the skewers with extra honey

-Try adding a slice of cucumber (this can be marinated in the balsamic honey sauce over night too!)

 

 

 

NATIONAL HONEY MONTH 2019

JEPF4

Do you know what September is?!?!

It’s our favorite month of year; NATIONAL HONEY MONTH!! We love bees, honey, and beekeeping and love that there is a whole month dedicated to it! What I love most is that I finally found the perfect job; most people say that after time they can’t stand where they work. Guess what? I don’t have that problem; we love talking about bees so much!! There are so many honey varieties and so many ways to use them!  I am so excited to share these fun facts this year and hope you enjoy anything new that you learn!

1- If you are thinking of planting raspberry and blackberry bushes bee aware that it will take time before you see fruit! They take a full year to establish before they will produce fruit the following year! Fruit honeys are the best and worth the wait!

2-Raw straight from the hive honey has oligosaccharides; this natural sugar serves as a prebiotic in the gut!

3-Medicinal uses of honey dates back thousands of years; from Sumerian art to Greek literature honey spans a multitude of times and cultures.

Early Sumerian art and Greek writing talk about using raw honey for medicinal use for 1,000’s of years! From open wounds to pain relief, honey has been used for everything!

4-Raw honey can bee used every day it is nature’s best sweetener and as always don’t over indulge!

5-Raw honey will not cause inflammation, like white sugar can, because raw honey is an anti-inflammatory!

6-True manuka honey is only produced in New Zealand and Australia; it contains a powerful chemical called methylglyoxal. This is what makes manuka honey so wonderful for wound healing! Please check out “The Honey Revolution” by Ron Fessenden for more details on manuka honey!

7-Children under 1 years of age should not have honey due to the fact their immune system is not fully matured. After 1 year of age they are ready to handle all of the nutrients that honey has to offer.

8-Raw honey contains 18 bioflavonoids; these are antioxidants that fight for your body and prevent damaging effects from free radicals!

9-Food for thought; Bees collect nectar from the bee-autiful flowers you see everyday and make honey. Honey is highly nutritional and our bodies are able to break down and use every molecule. White sugar is made from sugar cane or sugar beets and has to be processed and refined to where there is no nutritional value. Corn syrup and High fructose corn syrup are made from cornstarch which is also refined and processed and is foreign to the human body. This year we hope you make the switch to something that is better for your body and enjoy the nutritional benefits you receive.

Share with everyone you know and spread the word about how special bees are!! Help save the bees with us!!

From our hive to yours,

Bee Queen

Honey Super food Bowl

Honey Superfood Bowl

Do you know that bee pollen and honey are a superfood? 

This is one of my favorite snacks to enjoy before bedtime or for breakfast with fruit. I find that pairing the honey with a protein is a great way to keep my blood sugars levelThe honey gives me the glucose I need to feed my brain all night or all dayThis recipe is one of the best ways to get the nutritional benefits of bee pollen, honey, hemp seeds, and the cocoa nibs; plus it is easy and quick to make.  It is hearty, filling, made with all raw foods, and nutrient dense. You can dip apples in this, eat it by itself, or put it on pancakes or toast. I hope you enjoy this as much as I do!! 

Ingredients:  

1/3 cup Peanut butter   

Tbsp. honey 

1 ½ tsp. hemp seeds 

tsp. bee pollen 

2 tsp. cocoa nibs 

½ cup of walnuts 

Directions: 

Take the peanut butter, honey, hemp seeds, bee pollen, and mix them together. Then add the cocoa nibs and walnuts to the top and lightly fold. Spread on your favorite breakfast or eat it with apples. Refrigerate any portion that is not used to keep it fresh. ENJOY!

Tips: 

  • Try this recipe with cbd honey 
  • Add goji berries to boost the super foods 
  • Instead of using cocoa nibs use chocolate chips 

Blueberry Peach Honey Cupcakes

Bpc

Have you ever tasted happiness?

Spring is here and there is no better way to celebrate then with this recipe.  Honeyville makes a blueberry peach butter that just makes your mouth happy. We really enjoy using this in yogurt, oatmeal, and in our cupcakes! If you leave off the topping you can use these for morning breakfasts. If you want a swirl effect; mix everything together and swirl the blueberry peach butter in at the end.  We hope this recipe makes you as happy as it does for us! Happy Spring!!

Ingredients:

1 cup- Apple sauce (room temperature)

¼ cup-Honey

½ cup- Coconut oil (liquefied)

¾ cup- Honeyville’s Blueberry Peach butter

2 cups- Ground wheat berries

1 tsp. Cinnamon

1 tsp. Baking soda

Topping:

1 pint- Heavy cream

¼ cup of honey

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. Mix together the apple sauce, honey, coconut oil, and blueberry peach butter. Then add the flour, baking soda, and cinnamon; mix until everything is thoroughly mixed. Line cupcake pans with cupcake liners and spray with your favorite cooking spray. You can also use FSC certified baking cups, these do not need to be sprayed. Fill the baking cups with batter a little over half way full; makes about 15-16 cupcakes. Place in the oven and cook for 15-18 minutes or until the tooth pick comes out clean, then pull out of the oven and let cool. Some ovens work differently so make sure to keep an eye on them. While the cupcakes are cooling; pour the heavy cream into a mixer and start to whip at a medium speed. Add ¼ cup of honey to the whip cream and whip it until it makes firm peaks when pull the whip up. When the cupcakes are nice and cool, top them with the whip cream. Enjoy!

Tips:

  • Try using a buttercream frosting as a topping
  • Try using Honeyville’s bumbleberry jam
  • Swirl ¼-½ cup of the blueberry peach butter into the whipping cream for extra flavor

The Health Benefits of Honey and Wheat Berries

wb

I have a secret to share with you; we cannot eat at restaurants anymore! I have switched over the majority of my diet to clean healthy foods. As a family we are 100% on wheat berries for all of the bread products we make at home! A week ago, we snuck out for a family meal; I had some chicken, coleslaw, and waffle fries. That night I started having pains in my abdomen, which continued all through the next day, and got worse. I thought we were going to have to go to the hospital; thankfully it finally calmed down that night. The hours of pain were just the worst and showed me that I need to be more careful what goes in my body.  What we have been learning over the past months and changing has made a huge difference in only two months. We are so stunned with what real food can do for you that we have to share with the whole world. 

There are so many chemicals in our daily diet it can be hard to avoid them! This is one of the reasons we work with only organic wheat berries. Another reason is because they are LOADED in vitamins and minerals that you do not get from store bought pre-processed flours; even the organic ones. Wheat berries are also a great protein source, fiber, omega- 3 Fatty acids, betaine, and plant lignans. All of this combined is what benefits your body and fights against; inflammation, type 2 diabetes, gallstones, carcinogens, food allergies, and reduces cardiovascular disease. These are just some of the small benefits we have seen and felt in our own body.   

Raw honey is the same way! When it is raw and unprocessed it is loaded in vitamins, minerals, trace minerals, probiotics, prebiotics, enzymes, proteins, flavonoids, and amino acids! These are important for your diet and your immune system!! These are all the benefits you can receive when you buy raw straight from the hive honey. Most store-bought honeys are pasteurized or ultra- pasteurized which KILL all of the benefits you can get from raw honey. Not to mention you get the benefits of glucose; which feeds your brain and fuels your body. All raw honey has sugars that benefit your body and feeds your body usable sugars that are from…flowers!!!  Sugar is processed and derived from sugar cane; all the nutritional properties are lost in this process.  The bees get everything that you get from honey from flowers! That is it! Nothing else is added 

My new saying is, “think before you eat.” If you think you should not eat it or if something does not seem right; it does not belong in your body!  

From our beehive to yours,

Queen Bee

The Buzz About Honey and Wheat Berries

Honey wheat berries

How do you feel when people say, “You are what you eat”?

I never realized how true this statement is and have been feeling astonished that even the organic foods we have been purchasing are not as “healthy” as we think. Processed food is processed food. So we are back to the basics in our house; except for a few small treats that we have not figured out how to make yet. We are thrilled to say that we have taken all sugar out of the kitchen and are strictly using raw honey as a sweetener! Plus, we have been grinding our own wheat berries, learning how to make homemade honey bread, and learning more about our nutritional needs.

What we found fascinating is that the organic bread flour we have been buying is not the same as grinding your own wheat! Freshly milled flour will only last a couple of days before you have to worry about your flour going rancid; unless you put it in the fridge, or freezer then you have a better time line of use. Think about how many months flours sit on the store shelves (not a fridge) and then in your home. That got me wondering if it really has all the nutrients it is supposed to have? The answer is no. The flour in the store has the endosperm, the embryo, and the bran taken out of it; which is where all of the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals are. They are also adding different things to make sure that the flour does not go rancid sitting on the store shelves. So what is really going into our body now?

We have also had a big eye opener with pre-made bread too. None of the store-bought breads have basic ingredients; and many of them have soy and corn syrup. We make a simple honey bread with; freshly milled organic wheat berries, water, honey, egg, butter, salt, and yeast. That’s it! Sure, it won’t last a month on the counter, but we KNOW what is going into it. Plus, our blood sugar is showing a great reduction; it does not shoot through the roof using the wheat berries and honey.

Just like wheat berries, honey has the same problem; the store bought honey can be pasteurized or even ultra- pasteurized. This means that it takes away the possibility of the honey crystallizing and all of the vitamins, minerals, and pollen out of the “honey”. It takes cooking it for long periods of time and at high temperatures to achieve this; meaning there is NO benefits to the honey you are eating. Cheaper is NOT always better!!  Make sure you are reading the back of the ingredients; you will be surprised to see some honeys have added ingredients. Another problem we are seeing is with something called prairie honey; this is where they take the flowers boil them down and add sugar. Just because it comes from the flowers does not mean it is going to have the same benefits; neither does adding cane sugar.

This is why working with a beekeeper is so crucial; you can ask questions of them and know what is going on with your honey!!    *Buyer bee-ware of the “honey brokers” because they get honey from different states and even countries and call it local honey! They are not beekeepers, but are highly educated to get you to buy their products.

Next month we will go over the nutritional benefits of honey and wheat berries!

REMEMBER; IF IT IS NOT MADE BY A BEE IT IS NOT HONEY!!!

From our beehive to yours,

Queen Bee

Honey citrus salad

Honey citrus salad

Are you ready to hear something exciting?!?!

Recently we have been learning more about what is good to eat and what needs to be taken out. I am so excited to say we have been learning about wheat berries and all of the benefits they have. They are nutrient dense and are great for blood sugar. We are seeing our health change in great ways and I am super excited to share this new recipe with you! We are finding it is easy to add a ¼ cup of wheat berries to our meals and can be a great protein source, even for vegetarians. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do!

Ingredients:

1/3 cup wheat berries

¼ cup coconut oil

¼ cup asparagus

6 ounces salmon

2 Tbsp. O’Hara’s honey dill mustard

¾ cup spring leaf mix

¼ cup yellow squash

¼ cup mushroom

½ cup cherry tomatoes

½ a carrot

Dressing

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar

2 Tbsp. Orange blossom honey

1 tsp. lemon

1 tsp. lime

Directions:

-Cook 1 cup of wheat berries in 4 cups of water for 45 minutes or until soft. Drain and rinse the wheat berries and put aside.

-Warm up a sauté pan with the coconut oil; add the asparagus and cook for 5 minutes. Brush the top of the salmon with 1 Tbsp. of honey mustard, place face down in the pan, and cook for 4 minutes. Brush the top of the salmon with the remaining honey mustard, flip over, and cook for 4 minutes. Make sure both sides are golden brown and the salmon flakes off with a fork.

-Slice the squash, mushrooms, and cherry tomatoes. Shred the carrots.

-For the dressing: Take the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, orange blossom honey, lemon, and lime and mix together thoroughly.

-In a bowl; put the wheat berries, salmon, asparagus, spring leaf mix, squash, mushroom, tomatoes, carrots, and dressing. Toss everything together, put on a plate, and ENJOY!

Tips:

  • Try the honey chipotle mustard
  • Try the dressing with apple cider vinegar instead of balsamic vinegar
  • Add some sliced orange pepper and shredded purple cabbage to add extra color and flavor