Cookin'


For weeks now, Howard’s 3am feeding has left my soggy, sleep deprived mind slogging in circles around one burning set of questions: didn’t a customer email me wanting that peanut butter honey bar recipe we featured during Fill Your Own Bucket Day?

Did I accidentally delete the email?  What was his name?  Did he leave a voice message, instead?  Can I un-delete those?   Did Maggie delete them?  Was this on Twitter instead?  What about the blog?  Did he comment?  Did he like them?  Did I dream this up?

And so on and so forth.  I know y’all know about the 3am to do list.

Today, I had a moment to pull out my actual laptop, as opposed to my phone, and I looked at the Glacier County Honey Co. Facebook page, and there it was, the answer to the question that’s tormented me through many a baby burping session.  Here ya go, Ray Eklund:

(And for the rest of y’all, I can attest that these are super tasty and about as easy to throw together as it gets).

Nan’s No Bake Peanut Butter Honey Bars

Ingredients:

1 c Glacier County Honey

1 c natural peanut butter,

3 c old fashioned oats

 Directions:

Melt honey and peanut butter in a saucepan, on low.  Mix in oats.  Press into a 9 x 9 inch pan. Cover and let set overnight.  Cut into bars and pack in wax paper.

These bars were eaten too quickly for any pictures … but trust us on this, they’re awfully good.

If you like honey recipes or you need inspiration on cooking with honey and replacing some of the refined sugar in your diet, be sure to check out our Pinterest Board: Eat Your Honey!

You can substitute honey for granulated sugar in many recipes – this is especially easy, and wonderful, in baked goods! Don’t forget to spray your measuring cup with PAM or some similar baking spray in order to easily release the honey from the cup. Reduce the amount of liquid that a recipe calls for by 1/4 cup for each cup of honey, add about 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda, and lower the oven temperature by about 25 degrees to prevent over browning. Honey is particularly wonderful in baked goods, as it seals in moisture with incredible results.

If your honey is crystallized, liquefy and get baking!  Here’s a recent post on How to Liquefy Crystallized Honey.

Bee sweet, y’all.

2013.  Glacier County Honey Co.  All Rights Reserved.

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For Maggie’s 2nd birthday bash, I borrowed Nan’s juicer, liquefied a couple of half empty jugs of crystallized honey, and poof!  Honey lemonade.

The toddlers liked it.

The adults liked it.

The adults who mixed it with cheap Cook’s champagne REALLY liked it.

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Here’s the recipe:

4 cups of lemon juice — I squeezed my own because I wanted to make lemon infused vinegar with the peels, but I don’t think there’s any shame in using bottled lemon juice

2 cups of Glacier County Honey

6 cups water

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Heat the honey and the water in a pot so that the honey will fully emulsify.  If you spray your measuring cup with PAM or something similar, it will be much easier to measure the honey.  Once the honey-water is combined, add it to the lemon juice.  I used some old chunk honey that had crystallized, so it had quite a bit of wax in it.  As a result, I poured the honey-water combination through a strainer before marrying with the lemon juice in order to get the wax out.  I like the wax, but toddlers can be so picky …

Chill the lemonade or add ice cubes and then adjust the water ratio.  I probably added another 4 cups, but everyone’s got a different “lemonade tooth.”  And tasting is half the fun.

It ain’t rocket science, but it’s mighty tasty, and looks pretty with a few lemon slices floating in it.

Thanks to my sweet mother-in-law for the beautiful skep drink server!

2013.  Glacier County Honey Co.  All Rights Reserved.

Yesterday afternoon, I got a wild hair and decided that THIS YEAR I am not sending out my Christmas gifts with the 30,000 other packages I will ship on December 21st.

I say this every year, but yesterday afternoon, I actually decided what I would give to a few special folks, and then I made it!  Whoa.  And “a few special folks,” a lot of you are blog readers, so if you want to be surprised, skip this post.

There are gazillions of ways to fatten up your skinny friends and relatives via brownies, cakes, and cookies — just check out my Pinterest boards, stuffed full of gloriously unhealthy desserts that I hopefully will never make — but here’s a twist on the traditional sweet: our Soon-to-Bee World Famous Spiced Honeyed Almonds.

Y’all.  These babies are tasty!  The backs of Honeydew’s hands are stinging red from all the spatula smacks he’s received in kitchen in the last 24 hours.

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Almonds and honey are one of our favorite combinations at Glacier County Honey Co.  Did you know that the major reason we go to California is to pollinate almond orchards?  And that without said pollination, almonds would not be a commercially viable crop, and we would not enjoy their abundance in the relatively low prices that we do?

Mmmm, almonds.  We’re partial to the Blue Diamond kind — by supporting Blue Diamond, you’re supporting the lovely family that owns the orchard our bees pollinate.  And us, too, of course.

Anyway, if you’d like to gift your own Spiced, Honeyed Almonds, here’s the recipe, as I adapted from one posted on cooks.com:

Ingredients

2 c whole, raw almonds, skins on

1/4c sugar

1tsp salt

1tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

2tbsp Glacier County Honey

2tbsp water

2tsp vegetable oil

Method

Toast almonds on an ungreased baking sheet at 350F for about 12min.  Meanwhile, prepare a medium saucepan with the honey, water, and oil.  Bring it to a boil on medium heat just as the nuts are coming out of the oven.  Dump them in, and cook until the liquid is all absorbed, stirring frequently, 5-10min.  While they’re cooking, combine your sugar, salt, cinnamon and red pepper flakes.  Mix well in a small bowl.  When the almonds are done cooking, dump them into a medium bowl and toss with the sugar-spice mixture.  Spread on waxed paper to cool.

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Bee merry!

2012.  Glacier County Honey Co.  All Rights Reserved.

Mama Stone is our guest blogger today.

At Glacier County Honey Company, we’ll be taking a few days off this week to celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends.

While a moist, golden roast turkey always gets top billing, this year we’ll be concentrating on some delicious side dishes featuring our favorite ingredient–HONEY.

Instead of mashed potatoes swimming in gravy or limp green beans drenched in soup and fried onions, why not try some healthy carrots glazed with soy sauce or a tart, good-for-you cranberry sauce? For a new twist on a Thanksgiving staple, consider using Honey Corn Bread in your dressing (that’s stuffing to everyone north and west of the Mason-Dixon Line).

When you’re giving thanks this holiday, remember the miraculous honey bee and all the hard work they do to provide us with one of the most wonderful things on earth, honey. According to the National Honey Board, honey is made in one of the most efficient facilities in the world, the beehive. The 60,000 or so bees in a beehive may collectively travel as much as 55,000 miles and visit more than two million flowers to gather enough honey nectar to make just one pound of honey.

And for that, we are very thankful.

Honey & Soy Glazed Carrots

2# carrots, peeled and cut into 2-by-1/2″ sticks

2 tbls unsalted butter

2 tbls soy sauce

1 1/2 tbls honey

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil.  Add the carrots and cook until tender, about 8 minutes.  Drain.  In a large skillet, melt the butter.  Stir in the carrots and soy sauce and cook over high heat until the carrots are browned in spots, 2 minutes.  Stir in the honey and cook until the carrots are glazed, 2 minutes longer.

HONEY CORNBREAD

1/4 c honey

1 c buttermilk

1 egg

1 c yellow corn meal

1 c unbleached white flour

3 tbls butter, melted

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

Beat together egg, buttermilk, and honey.  Mix together well all dry ingredients.  Combine all ingredients, including melted butter and mix well.  Spread into buttered 8″ square pan and bake for 20 min in 425 degree oven.

QUICK CRANBERRY SAUCE

3/4 c ruby port or marsala wine

1/2 c water

3/4 c plus 2 tbls honey

3 tbls red wine or balsamic vinegar

pinch white pepper

12 oz cranberries, about 4 cups

Combine the port, water, honey, vinegar, pepper and cranberries in a nonreactive saucepan.  Bring to a boil over medium heat until the cranberries begin to “pop” – you will hear them.  Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 to 20 min, until the sauce is thick and the berries have burst open.  Allow the sauce to cool, cover and refrigerate.  Keeps for several weeks. Makes 3 cups.

Happy Thanksgiving!

2011.  Glacier County Honey Co.  All Rights Reserved.

July is here.

I will wake up each of the 31 days in this month, in the full daylight that is 5:30am this time of year, breathe in the sweet clover, alfalfa and aspen breezing through the screens, and announce to Honeydew, “Time to get up!  It’s my favorite month of the year!”

And though he generally groans and rolls his eyes at me and starts talking about hockey and singing O Canada, I think it’s secretly his favorite month, too.  Why else would we promise each other never to leave Glacier County in July?  Medical emergencies excepted.

I guess.

Only if they’re Maggie’s.

Anyway, we’ve been running around working like dogs, entertaining family and friends, and generally not blogging.  But here’s what we did at the end of June, to celebrate my 31st birthday.

My at-the-time five week old baby girl was the best gift I could even think about getting.

She’s six weeks old now, and still my favorite gift.  I imagine this feeling will continue for quite some time.

But Maggie Rose wasn’t the only gift I got that you can’t order on Amazon.com.  Before she left on a well-deserved vacation, my Mama baked me a birthday cake and hid it in the freezer, with instructions to Brother Dear and Honeydew to serve it on my birthday, along with a bottle of my favorite Veuve Clicquot.

There aren’t words that do justice to the deliciousness of the very simple fudge icing on this cake.  One taste, and I’m in my Grandma Betty’s kitchen, watching her assemble a 14 layer chocolate cake.  We’re all still young, and Howard is there, clamoring to lick the bowl.  But I’m pretty sure that it’s not just my memories that make this icing transcendent … here’s the recipe so you can find out for yourself.

From the Black Family Cookbook, Cathy Black’s recipe for My Favorite Icing of All Time:

3 c sugar

1/2 c cocoa

3 tbls white Karo syrup

1 c milk

1 tsp vanilla

1 stick butter

Mix sugar and coca well in a heavy boiler.  Add Karo syrup and milk gradually; stir mixture until smooth.  Cook over medium heat, stirring until it comes to a boil.  Add butter and stir.  Set aside 10 minutes.  Add vanilla and beat until thick enough to spread by hand.  Do not rake sides of boiler after it starts to boil or it will be grainy.  Spread between cake layers and around the sides of the cake.

2011.  Glacier County Honey Co.  All Rights Reserved.

I love to cook.  But I don’t post too many recipes on this blog – I feel there is little reason to do so when bloggers like Ree Drummond and Deb and Alex are keeping the internet filled with delicious bites.  Especially when their sites include nice little recipe extras like … measurements.  My recipes often lack such niceties, as any of my pre-Honeydew roommates will tell you.  And actually, Honeydew will say the same thing.

But this recipe is worth sharing, even measurement-less.  My mama came up with it, and I have eaten as much as she will make of it, as often as she will make it, for the last couple of weeks: watermelon-chevre-mint salad, with a balsamic glaze.

Isn’t it pretty?

Strangely, this is quite a healthy dish – as you’re well aware if you follow me on Twitter, I’ve mostly wanted to eat ice cream, frozen yogurt, ice cream, sorbet, ice cream, milkshakes, ice cream, pie, ice cream, gingerbread, ice cream, and cake in the last few months.  And ice cream.

But this dish is mighty good for ya.  Here’s the “recipe:”

Ingredients

Watermelon

Fresh Mint

Chevre/Goat Cheese

Balsamic Vinegar

Directions

Chop up a bunch of watermelon.  Flick out any black seeds.  White seeds won’t hurt ya.

Chop up a bunch of mint that you may or may not have leftover from the Kentucky Derby.

Crumble up a bunch of chevre/goat cheese.

Gently combine in a pretty bowl.  Admire.

Boil balsamic vinegar, i.e. pour a couple ounces into microwave safe container (preferably with a pouring spout) for about 2 minutes.  This will give the balsamic a sweet, glaze-y effect.

If going for a beautiful presentation, serve salad from pretty bowl and offer boiled balsamic vinegar on the side, as adding the balsamic to the pretty bowl will make the beautiful salad look like stewed tomatoes, though it will still taste divine.  If not going for a beautiful presentation, dump the boiled balsamic into the bowl and then serve.

Keeps in the fridge for several days, and I think the longer it marinates in the balsamic, the better it gets.

Enjoy!

2011.  Glacier County Honey Co.  Recipe credit to Nancy Stone.  All Rights Reserved.

Recently at the Home for Wed Mothers, we received a heavy, fragrant package in the mail.  It carried with it the earthy odors of south Georgia, of sticky sunshine and cast irons skillets bubbling with the buttery goodness of  springtime Vidalia onions … like no other onions on Earth.

Do you think that my family sends more produce via the United States Postal Service than your average family?  Hmmm.

Anyway, Sissy and Funcle P were the kind senders of this box of Vidalias, and we will savor each and every last one of them … until, as Funcle P scrawled on the box, we cry because they’re gone.

Because he’s right, y’all – Vidalia onions are so sweet and good you’d never cry while chopping ’em up … only when they’re gone.  If you’ve never had any, gitchu to the sto’, immediately.  And if you’re a Southern expat like Mom and me, remind your Southern relatives about that flat rate shipping from USPS … handy for produce, and honey, too.  We thank y’all kindly.

If, for some odd reason, you should tire of slicing onions, squash, and butter into a cast iron skillet (I personally find this dish impossible to improve upon), here’s another suggestion for what you might do with a lovely box Vidalias, from Mama Stone:

HOT VIDALIA ONION DIP

1 1/2 cups mayonnaise

1 1/2 cups grated Swiss cheese

1 1/2 cups chopped Vidalia onions

Preheat oven to 350 . Mix all ingredients in an oven safe bowl and bake for 25-30 minutes. Serve with pita bread wedges or crackers.

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.  Now that’s some South in yo mouth.

2011.  Glacier County Honey Co.  All Rights Reserved.

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