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

Joliday Honey Jalapenos

Joliday Honey Jalapenos

I really love being able to cook in the kitchen. I love how my creativity can take over and make something really amazing. I want to make food that is fun and unexpected and came up with Joliday Honey Jalapenos. I wanted to do something that was sweet and spicy and is not common for the holidays. I am excited to share this because they are FREAKING AMAZING!!  This is a great appetizer and each large jalapeno will serve one person. If you use them as a meal, serve one to two of them with a side salad and some potato wedges.  I hope that you love them as much as our family and friends do!!!

Ingredients: 

8- Big jalapenos

1 lbs- Chicken breast

4 ounces- Cream cheese

¾ c- Winter spice whipped honey

¾ cup- Juice sweetened dried cranberries

1 cup- Cheddar cheese

Directions:

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees F, and spray an 8 X 13 baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.

Slice the chicken into chunks and cook the meat for about 10 minutes until the inside of the chicken is white. Set aside to cool for about 5 minutes.

Using gloves, wash the jalapenos. Slice one side down the center and take the seeds out. Place them into the baking dish.

Next, put the chicken, cream cheese, winter spice honey, and dried cranberries into a food processor. Mix for about 3 minutes. Take out the blade and fold the cheddar cheese into the mixture.

Stuff the jalapenos with the chicken mixture until they are plump, but not over flowing. Bake the jalapenos for 30 minutes.

Take the jalapenos out of the oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Put on a serving platter and drizzle the jalapenos with the winter spice honey. Serve and ENJOY!

Tips:

  • Try adding pecans into the mixture for some extra crunch
  • If you cannot find big jalapenos; get approximately 15-18 of the smaller size and bake for about 15 minutes or until the jalapenos are soft
  • Try adding bacon; about 8-9 stripes will add just enough flavor

 

Have a Bee-licious Day from the Bee Queen’s Kitchen!

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 

Confessions of a beekeeper 2019

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We have been asked so many times; why are plants so important? Why does it matter so much how bees are taken care of?

This year has been un-bee-livable! I have been learning so much for the last several years, but this year was different. If you follow The Honey Cottage or have read any of my other blogs; you know that we are BIG advocates on planting flowers. We are also advocating for the bees needing at least an acre and a half of constantly blooming flowers in order to stay healthy. This year we saw PROOF on what this can do for a beehive!! Our bees were busy and are super healthy. We know that many beekeepers have to sometimes feed the bees sugar water, which is a necessary evil. However, we are determined to show what happens when bees have a natural diet of flowers and lots of them. When we do feed our bees; we feed them with frames of honey that we have packed away from the year before.

We have a bee hive that is in the mountains where the bees have access to everything! There is a small river nearby and tons and tons of flowers for the bees. There is a huge basswood tree, apple trees, chokecherry trees, wildflowers, and sour cherries. Every time we went to check on the bees there were more flowers blooming. We saw so many new flowers that we have never seen before that we were in shock. There are acres and acres available to the bees. Since we have just established the bees this year, we wanted to leave enough honey for them to make it to spring. We did manage to steal a couple of frames of honey and the honey is INCREDIBLE!!!  I have never had honey so amazing! We are super pleased with how well that they are doing that we are making more planes to plant more flowers next year.

The property where they located at said this was the best year, they had for the fruit that was produced! That is one of the biggest complements a bee can receive. In order for the flowers to produce seeds, fruit, or vegetables; the bees have to pollinate them. Flowers are males and females just like humans; males produce the pollen that the bees are able to take to the female flowers. The pollen needs to get to the stigma of a female plant in order to reproduce. It takes 10 grains of pollen just to pollinate the other plants correctly. Which is why bees are faster and more proficient in pollinating flowers then humans. Once the flower has been pollinated it will produce the seeds and food that we eat. The amount of food that is eaten on the plant means the bees are doing an essential job for humans to keep eating and survive!

Help save the bees and start planning out your flower garden for next year now! There are drought resistant plants, perennials, and annuals that can bee planted. There are plants that will come up in the Spring, Summer, or Fall. Help where you can if you cannot plant your own garden. Please help save the bees one flower at a time!

From our hive to yours,

Bee Queen

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, Royal Jelly, and Skin Care

Practical Herbs lotion

Do you ever look at a skin care product and wonder why honey and royal jelly are used?

At The Honey Cottage, one of the many questions customers ask is, “doesn’t honey make you feel sticky”? The neat thing about honey is when it is used in a complete formula it actually is not sticky. The biggest reason that honey is used in skin care is because it is a humectant!! A humectant means that that honey is going to draw moisture to the skin. It also creates a barrier on the skin to prevent moisture from leaving.

Royal jelly is a substance that is fed to the bees,in their larva stage, for the first three days and the queen bee her whole life. Honey and royal jelly are both an antibacterial, have antioxidants, and are an antimicrobial. Raw honey and royal jellies ability to fight bacteria are what make them perfect for skin care.Raw honey and royal jelly are loaded in antioxidants which make them perfect for giving your skin the ability to repair itself. Lastly, the antimicrobial ability of honey and royal jelly means that they keep microorganisms at bay. This is why honey and royal jelly are favored for being used in facial scrubs, lip balms, soap, lotions, and even shampoo!!

We bee-lieve that royal jelly should be used sparingly, but we also bee-lieve in the huge benefits people are seeing using it in their skin care regimen. This is why we are fighting hard to find the best products for our customers. A good skin care product will leave you feeling refreshed, renewed, and revitalized.

We are so excited to be working with Practical Herbs and her skin care line. Not only does she use the gifts from the hive, but she has researched every ingredient she uses to make the best products for her customers. All of her products are developed to add moisture to your skin and not take it away. Practical Herbs has been perfecting her business for 10 years and really is making a buzz!

Buzz on by The Honey Cottage and check out her amazing skin care line!We have samples of her lotion for you to try!

Stay tuned for our next blog on skincare benefits with bee pollen and beeswax!

From our beehive to yours,

Queen Bee

 

 

Summer honey fruit salad

Summer honey.jpg

There is nothing that celebrates summer more than all the luscious fruit that is coming in! I keep forgetting that honey can be used in anything and everything and this is one of our favorite ways to eat honey, especially for fighting allergies. So, I wanted to show how easy it is just to add a little bit of honey to the diet. It not only boosts the immune system, but it is super easy to use! I toss the apples and bananas in the honey and orange/ lemon juice to keep them from browning and to add a little extra flavor to the recipe.

Ingredients:

¼ cup- blueberries

4 strawberries

8 grapes

1 mandarin orange

2 Tbsp. Pecans

2 Tbsp. Walnuts

2 Tbsp. of orange juice or lemon juice

Honey

¼ cup of apples

½ of a banana

Directions: 

Wash the blueberries and put them in a bowl, then slice up the strawberries into quarter slices and place them in the bowl, next slice the grapes and mandarin orange into halves (since they are small you can keep them whole too) and place them the bowl. Smash the walnuts and pecans into bite sized pieces and add them to the fruit bowl.

In a separate bowl; mix the orange or lemon juice and the honey together thoroughly and put a side.

Take the apple and cut it into bite sized pieces and place in the honey sauce, then slice up the banana, and add it to the apples and honey sauce. Toss together lightly coating all pieces of fruit.

Add the apples and bananas to the other fruit lightly toss again and serve! ENJOY!

Tips:

-Try using honeyville’s raspberry whipped honey to add some extra flavor

-Take out the pecans and walnuts and try with sunflower seeds

-Try adding a ¼ of pineapple chunks

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