The Sunflower and the Bees

What is the most fascinating thing you have ever seen?

For me; it was seeing the process of how sunflower seeds are actually made! I have known my whole life that sunflower seeds came from sunflowers, however, actually seeing the process made it come to life! One of the blessings that came out of 2020 for us was that we were forced to slow down and actually stop and smell the roses. We decided to plant more flowers last year and actually got the joy to watch them grow, bloom, and watch the bees buzz about.

When the sunflowers popped up, I was so excited to just sit and watch the bees move about the flower. The bees move about in a counter clock wise direction! Look at all of the pollen this bee has!

For some reason I had never seen that the sunflower has a lot of little flowers in the center! Each of those little flowers has to be pollinated for us to get sunflower seeds!!

It took a couple of weeks before I saw the flowers dry out and little seeds were underneath these tiny flowers! They have to be brushed off to see the seeds!

Then we were able to peel the seeds out of the head of the sunflower! WE HAD HARVESTED OUR SUNFLOWER SEEDS FROM OUR OWN GARDEN!!! To see the whole process was just mind blowing for me and so exciting for the whole family! We hope to get more this year; thanks for buzzing by!

From Our Bee Hive To Yours,

Bee Queen

The Honey Cottage for Kids- Lily’s spread

At The Honey Cottage; we get asked all the time how to use jalapeno and apricot habanero jellies. I was super sad when mom would answer, use it with cream cheese. I don’t like hot stuff! I was surprised when mom said we can use other types of jam! I am so excited to share this recipe; I used blueberry peach honey butter from Honeyville. I think this recipe is super special because of how yummy it is!

Ingredients:

8 ounces of cream cheese

1/2 a jar of blueberry peach honey butter

Directions:

We use a separate plate for the cream cheese so it does not soak into the crackers.

Open the cream cheese and place it onto a small plate. Pour half a jar of blueberry peach honey butter on top. Serve with crackers and enjoy!!

Small Business Saturday November 28, 2020

Why support small businesses on Small Business Saturday?

A couple of years ago, I read a blog that was talking about how everyone needs to have support on Small Business Saturday. This included big businesses because our neighbors, friends, and family members work there so it is good to support their pay check. At first, I agreed with this blog because I understood their message bee-hind it.

Then 2020 hit…

Here is why I bee-lieve you should be supporting small businesses on Small Business Saturday. When COVID-19 hit this year, we saw a large increase of people shopping at big businesses. They have food, electronics, toys, and other daily essentials that people need. While small businesses had to shut down. They had to let people go. Other businesses literally could not survive the shut down to keep going. Many tried to get on-line sales, curb-side pickup, and even went as far as to deliver to homes to try and keep going. Small businesses suffered while big businesses kept booming by the influx of buyers.

I also realized something else this year; where do people shop on black Friday and cyber Monday? That is right big stores. So many people rush out to get the better deals, the big buy, or the cheapest items to make the budget stretch. I get it. We are all on a budget so I totally understand these sales and do not down them.

What I am trying to get across is; big businesses are not suffering they get support 365 days a year!  Small businesses have one special day that belongs to Small Businesses. Small Business Saturday is about supporting the mom and pop shops that are trying to do something they are passionate about while also making a living. When you show your support by shopping with a Small Business you are helping them. For some it is putting their kids through school, paying for dance lessons, paying rent for their home, or allowing them to support other businesses.  For some businesses this is their big push to get through the slow months of January and February.

Now let me be clear; I completely understand that COVID-19 has changed the game this year. Maybe you are not able to get out. Maybe you don’t want to be around people. We totally understand. BUT, you can shop on-line or call them and ask them if they can do curb-side. Or shop on another day when it is less crowded. Customers don’t like seeing their favorite businesses go; so, let’s all work together to keep Small Businesses open!

From our hive to yours,

Bee Queen

What is Raw Honey?

JYFF2

We have been having more customers come into The Honey Cottage and ask, what is raw honey? What are the nutritional benefits of honey? I am so excited to show you why honey is the way it is!

Raw honey starts with the bees drinking nectar from the flowers and adding their enzymes to the nectar. That is it! The flowers the bees visit provide everything that bees and humans need to survive on. The bees then take the nectar to the hive, put it into cells, and lower the moisture level. When the water content is about 15%-20% the bees will cap it signifying it is ready for human consumption. Honey has 180 known substances in it!

Raw honey straight from the hive has naturally occurring sugars in it. Raw honey from the hive has 20 different sugars in it; these are the main sugars in honey:

-Dextrose                                             -Levulose                                              -Maltose

-Fructose                                              -Sucrose                                                -Glucose

It also has:

Probiotics, prebiotics, water, proteins, enzymes, antioxidants, and phytonutrients.

15 different acids – gluconic, citric, formic, lactic, amino, and pyruvic just to name a few.

Vitamins – vitamins A, C, D, E, K, B complex vitamins, and beta carotene.

Minerals and trace minerals – potassium, sodium, magnesium,silica, copper, iodine to name a few.

Other nutrients – pigments, esters, tannis, and terpenes, to name some of them.

18 Flavonoids – quercetin, luteolin, kaempferol, apigenin, chrysin, and galangin to name some of them.

There are many other things in the products from the hive that have not been identified yet! All products from the hive cannot be duplicated by man!  The most important thing  that we want you to understand; ALL the sugar that is in honey is from the FLOWERS! The nutrients that you receive from honey are nothing you are going to find in table sugar, corn syrup, or even artificial sugars. Honey is an anti-inflammatory; this means it will fight inflammation! You can’t get anything better then that!

Come back next month and find out why honey is the best choice for your life! We will be answering questions such as: why is honey different from other sugars you find at the store? Can I get sugar free honey? How is honey better from other sugars?

From our hive to yours,

Bee Queen

 

Honey Oatmeal

Honey oatmeal

There is nothing better than starting your day with something hearty; especially, on cold days during the winter. We have been finding that the more complex a carbohydrate is the more nutritious it is for your body. It has been a little challenge for us because so much of the food in the grocery store is processed. So…we are back to the basics; we are learning that homemade is the best way. We have made a switch to steel cut oats because they have more fiber and will keep you fuller longer. This is my favorite way to make oatmeal and it is very flavorful. Plus, I don’t leave the table wanting anything else; I am full and satisfied for several hours.

Ingredients:

¾ cupSteel cut oatmeal

½ cup Walnuts

1 Tbsp. Flax seed

½ a Banana

1 Tbsp. Honey

1 tsp. of Ceylon cinnamon

1 Tbsp. of Butter- optional

Sprinkle of salt- optional

Directions:

Measure out the water, according to the servings you need, place in a pot and heat the water until it is boiling. Add the oatmeal to the water and turn down the heat as low as possible. Leave the pot uncovered and let it cook for 25 minutes; if you like it a little softer cook a little longer. Let it set for a few minutes and put in a bowl; add the walnuts and flax seed stir into the oatmeal. Cut half a banana and put the slices on top, drizzle the honey, and sprinkle the Ceylon cinnamon. If you like a little saltiness add a pat of butter or sprinkle of salt on top. ENJOY!

Tips:

  • Add a Tbsp. of chocolate chips or cocoa powder
  • Try hemp seed instead of flax seed
  • Try ½ cup of blueberries and raspberries instead of banana’s

Honey Goat Cheese Dip

Goat cheese dip.jpg

I LOVE DIP!!! It adds a totally new flavor to what you are eating and I really love that. To me nothing celebrates fall better than food that has cranberry orange in them. This recipe is one of my favorites because you can make it into a dressing and also a spread. Nothing beats having a versatile recipe in your cook book! I have found that using canned mandarin oranges adds more flavor then the fresh or frozen. I really like the orange flavor to come out in this recipe, so if you do not want to use the mandarin oranges add a touch more orange oil. You can also use Honeyville’s seasonal flavor cranberry orange whipped honey too! This is only available until Christmas so try it and stock up on it now!!

Ingredients:

10.5 ounces of goat cheese

½- 1 Tbsp cinnamon to your taste

½ cup honey

½ tsp. organic orange oil

1/3 cup cranberries

1/3 cup walnuts

¼-1/3 cup mandarin orange slices

Directions:

Place the goat cheese, cinnamon, honey and orange oil in a blender and blend for 2 minutes. Then add the cranberries and walnuts and blend for 30 seconds to a minute; depending on how chunky you want it. Put the dip in a bowl that you will be serving in and fold the mandarin orange slices into the cheese mixture. Put in the fridge for 2 hours for it to firm up and serve with your favorite fruits, vegetables, and crackers. Also, tastes good on chips! ENJOY!

Tips:

-Add 2 Tbsp of mandarin orange juice to make the dip into a dressing

-Add 4 ounces of cream cheese to make the dip into a spread

-Try pecans instead of walnuts