Thursday, July 9, 2009

"Bee"ting Mother Nature!

While fishing around for my Fireweed Jelly recipe yesterday I came across a recipe for Homesteader's Honey from a cookbook titled The Cabin Friend (reprinted in Alaska Magazine July 1976). The recipe called for clover blossoms (which I easily spotted at the Community Garden) and 20 or so fireweed flowers-right from my backyard. Well, naturally I bit the bait and had to jar some of this. Jim comes in the door and I tell him I'm making honey. He laughs and says, "YOU'RE NOT A BEE!" ha did come out a beautiful amber color. I'm reserving judgement for those yummy sourdough biscuits with butter though. Here's the recipe:

Homesteader's Honey

2 1/2 cups water
30 red clover blossoms
30 white clover blossoms
18 fireweed blossoms
10 cups sugar (REDUCE this to 8 or 9 or it will come out very thick and sticky!)
1 teaspoon alum

Wash and drain blossoms. Combine blossoms in a pan with 2 1/2 C water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat, cover and let steep (like tea) for 10 minutes. Bring blossoms and water to a boil again and add sugar and alum. Boil for 10 minutes. Strain the "honey" through a colander lined with cheesecloth and pour into small sterilized glass canning jars. Water bath seal for 10 minutes. Makes about 1/2 gallon of "honey"---in my case nine 1/2 pint jars.

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