Let me start by saying I am no bee/honey expert, by no means. Some of you reading this know a lot more about it than I do ~ I won’t call your by name. Growing up, my grandfather had honey bees and my Daddy has them today. I’ve been around them my whole life, and as you can see from some of the picture I’ve taken, bees don’t bother me. With that being said….What I do know is there’s some pretty awesome health benefits to the real stuff….the sweet liquid gold that you get locally – NOT store bought. Store bought isn’t much more than a sweet tasting honey like syrup that might help your cough. I will admit, I have grabbed a honey bear or two before, due to poor planning on my part, but not anymore!
Did you know there’s tons of health benefits hidden in that extra sweetness of your local raw honey?! “Local” and “Raw” are the key words. Bees use pollen from anything that blooms to make the honey. They spend 1000s of hours collecting pollen from nearly 2 million flowers to make 1 lb of honey. The pollen used in making the honey allows it to help you build antibodies to counter act pollen allergies. Honey contains natural antioxidants, enzymes and minerals; such as, iron, zinc, potassium, calcium, magnesium and Vitamin B6. When you buy “honey bears” or honey from the store, you lose all these health benefits. Honey purchased in chain stores is so highly processed that the high temperatures destroy the natural enzymes, vitamins and minerals. There’s no trace of pollen and the #1 ingredient is High Fructose Corn Syrup “aka” the devil….that stuff is BAD! Even my children will tell you it’s bad stuff.
Did you know 1 tablespoon of honey contains 17 carbs and 64 calories but will not spike your blood sugar like white sugar? It is the most nutrient dense food known to man. It helps lower blood pressure and blood sugar. It boosts the immune system and helps the digestive system. It boosts energy and memory, promotes weight loss, and helps prevent cancer and heart disease. It’s GOOD stuff! Not to mention it’s been around forever! Warned about in the Bible (Proverbs 25:16) and discovered in ancient pyramids. The honey found in the pyramids is still good today, good because it doesn’t spoil! Bacteria doesn’t grow in acidic foods or super saturated sugar and honey is both!
When used in cooking it is a healthy alternative to sugar and doesn’t require as much. If the recipe calls for 1 cup of sugar, reduce it to 2/3 – 3/4 cup of honey and reduce the cooking temperature by 25 degrees.
When working bees, it’s best to wear protective clothing. Clothing types vary. Shanny wears a bee keeper’s hat with a veil and a jacket, her father wears a complete suit and my Dad wears just the hat and veil. They all vary and each is simply a preference.
Here’s pictures of Daddy working his bees. Checking the hives to see if any are ready for harvesting.
Some are just getting started and some are REALLY close to harvesting!
The rack below is one of ten in the box called a “Super”. It weighs approximately 3 lbs and is as fresh as it gets. This pictured is spring honey. Think about that just a second, 3 lbs….and it takes those bees nearly 2 million flowers to make just 1 lb – wow – that’s alot of flowers!
Honey trimmed off of an edge. Delicious!!!! It literally melts in your mouth as you chew that sweetness.
This is the “Super”, see all those edges, my kids will stand in line for this!!! An average Super should produce roughly 5 gallons of honey.
Dad’s bee hives.
This swarm out grew their home, it happens when it’s full of honey!!! That’s where Dad grabbed the “Super” of honey.
Honey that my father collected from one of his hives.
Finished product!!! It’s delicious and one of the few things Dad never sells….with four girls, we leave little to spare….