Thursday, November 25, 2010

Many ways to shop Honeyrun Farm this Holiday season...

We have been busy working on building online stores... please take a look and tell us what you think!
Our store on Etsy: 30% off everything until Dec. 1st
Our store on Foodzie: 25% off on Black Friday, 15% off for the remainder of the week
Our store on local harvest
And of course, you can always purchase soap directly through our website.

We will also be participating in the annual Holiday Show at the North Market on Dec. 4 and 5, where you will find the following products, plus all our regular items.
A new honey gift package featuring Spring, Summer, and Fall honey.
One of our newest best-selling soaps: Peppermint & Tea Tree - invigorating and uplifting!
Pure beeswax candles with natural honey/beeswax scent.
Cinnamon soap... a favorite during this time of year.
Pure raw chunk honey - pair it with cheese for your holiday entertaining.
Thanks for stopping by, hope you are enjoying your Thanksgiving!



Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Our Top 5 Best Ways to Eat Honey

What's your favorite way to eat honey? I thought it might be fun to show some of our favorite ways we partake of honey in this house. There are times when we can easily go through a pound of honey a week. Many of our customers buy a little 8 ounce honey and say, "Oh, this will last me a couple months." What?!? Some people need some creativity when it comes to honey consumption! Here are some great ways enjoy Honeyrun Farm Honey:

1. Let's not overlook the obvious. The all-around favorite: Peanut Butter and Honey - on toast. Yes, toast makes it so much better, with the warm peanut butter and the honey oozing through the whole sandwich... need I say more?

2. On a spoon, sprinkled with some bee pollen. This is our version of a daily multivitamin. Our children, (Mason and Maizy, 2 1/2 and 15 months old) love bee pollen. They eat it plain off a spoon and say, "Num num!" And then they come running back for more. Imagine how much tastier it is when you mix it with honey! We love when the honey is just beginning to granulate, like this Black Locust honey. It is so smooth and creamy, it just melts on your tongue.

3. On cornbread. Yesterday I made a homeade cornbread with real sweet corn in it, using Alton Brown's recipe from the food network. Delicious. Smother it with our fall honey and you won't regret it.

4. Graham cracker/honey milk dipper. This is Isaac's invention, and it has become our favorite afternoon snack. Take two graham crackers, smother with honey. Sandwich them together. Dip in milk until they just start to get soggy. Enjoy. Seriously... this is one of the BEST ways to eat honey. I made homeade graham crackers today using this recipe (I love Alton Brown's recipes).
5. In Hot Cocoa. A few mornings each week I make myself homeade cocoa with honey. Fill a pan with 12 ounces or so of milk (Snowville is my preference!). Add 2 spoonfuls Equal Exchange Drinking Cocoa. Whisk together when warm. Add 1 TB summer honey. Add whipped cream if you're feeling decadent.
Please share some of your favorite ways to eat honey in the comments sections! Or email me your great recipe and I'll post it.

This Saturday is our last Saturday at the North Market, by the way... time to stock up for winter! We will be bringing 5 lb. jugs and even a few gallons for those serious honey lovers out there.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Our Honey is now available for purchase through Foodzie!

We are pleased to announce a new partnership with the online marketplace Foodzie! You can visit our online store at www.honeyrunfarm.foodzie.com. We are currently selling our Summer Honey, Lavender Infused Honey, and Chunk Honey through their website, and hope to add more varieties later. Go check it out!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Appalachian Mountain Artisans Fest - Oct 8-10

Come join us this weekend for the Appalachian Mountain Artisans Fest in Winchester, Ohio. Activities include:
Artisan Booths
Sunflower & Pumpkin Patches
Hay “Swimming Pool”
Corn Maze
Antique Tractor Show
Face Painting
Classes & Demonstrations
Live Entertainment
Charity Auction
Check out their facebook page here. And a schedule of events here. Pictured below are just a few of the items we will be bringing with us to sell this year!



Creations from the farm...

Something new we tried this year at Honeyrun Farm: Hot Pepper Ristras! Very easy to make if you have the time and patience. I am not going to attempt to provide directions here, but feel free to email me if you want to know how I did it. These can be hung in your kitchen to allow the peppers to dry - ready for use all winter long.Pictured below are Joe's Long Cayenne peppers. These dry best of all 10 varieties of peppers I grew this year.
There is still time to harvest more peppers before the final frost here in Ohio. Send me a message if you want us to bring any to the farmer's market. We'll be at the North Market Oct. 16th, 23rd, and 30th.

How to cook a pumpkin (or squash).


Some of you out there will look at this post and think, "duh... it's not rocket science." But many people really have no clue what to do with a freshly harvested pumpkin... other than carve a face in it and place a candle inside on Halloween. This year, I grew an abundance of pumpkins and winter squash, and have already sold most of the heirloom varieties at the market. Most customers were buying them for decorations - but I made sure to tell them that they shouldn't just throw it out when they were done. Bake it! Make a pie, some pumpkin soup, pumpkin bars, pumpkin roll... the list goes on (and if you don't believe me, just come to the Circleville Pumpkin Show Oct 20-23... you will see the many amazing uses of pumpkin).
So here is a little post to educate you on how to bake a pumpkin or squash. I used the "Speckled Hound" pumpkins which grew beautifully this year. They are prized for their buttery yellow flesh. I made a delicious pumpkin/sweet potato soup with this. Too bad I can't provide the recipe here because... well... I didn't use one. But it was delicious, and there are many recipes out there to try. I recommend using sweet potato rather than sugar... it's all the sweetness a good pumpkin soup needs! Another side note about these "Speckled Hound" pumpkins: They were the secret ingredient in the Ohio Local Foods Week Iron Chef competition on Sunday night! I guess you could say I am a bit proud.

First step: Chop the pumpkin in half. Yes, I said Chop. Slice. Carve. Whatever method you like.
Second step: Use a large spoon to scoop out the seed and rind. If using an heirloom... save the seeds to plant next year!
Third step: Place the pumpkin or squash in a baking dish filled with about a half inch of water.
Fourth Step: Bake in a 350 degree oven until the flesh becomes soft and squishy. This pumpkin took about 40 minutes. Just open the oven every now and then and prick it with a fork to test it. You can also prick it (like you would a potato) to allow it to cook it more quickly and evenly. Don't take it out of the oven until it is soft all the way through. It is now time to scoop out the flesh, leaving the shell behind.
The next step is to take this pumpkin flesh and puree it in your food processor. You will probably need to add a little milk or water to get a nice smooth consistency. Since I made soup, I made mine pretty fine textured. If you're cooking a pie, you might want to leave it a bit more stiff, like canned pumpkin you would buy in the store. As you can see the light yellow color of the Speckled Hound is quite different from many darker red pumpkins.
Final Step: Take the pumpkin skin and rind out to the chickens (or your compost bin if chickens are unavailable). And there you have it! You have cooked your very own pumpkin! Much more rewarding than using canned pumpkin from the store. And besides... wasn't there a huge canned pumpkin shortage this year?
Come on down to the farm and pick out a pumpkin to cook up. You can even bring your rinds to our chickens when you're all done.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Produce too beautiful to eat...

As I scrolled down through the list of posts over the past few months I realized that I was missing something. Too much honey and flowers, and not enough produce. Sadly, the only post I did about the produce farm featured the floods we had in early June! So I have to show you all the beautiful bounty of Becky's produce farm here at Honeyrun. Purple carrots? Yes! Purple Carrots. Why not? Heirloom tomatoes also come in all shapes, sizes, and colors.
This was my favorite. Just look at the red and orange striations.
My favorite summer snack. My own little version of Brushetta, complete with fresh basil, olive oil, and Italian cheeses melted over top in the oven. Here I used Hillbilly and Amish Paste tomatoes, both of which are heirlooms.
And here is one of Becky's signature crops: Cherry Tomatoes! Sun golds are a farmer's market favorite; known for a burst of flavor that is sprightly sweet. They combine nicely with their more acidic and tart counterparts, the red cherry tomato. There's still time left to pick these up at the next farmer's market!

Honey Robbers

video
Isaac took the time on Friday to take some video of the bees as they were "robbing" the honey from the beeswax cappings. After we scrape the beeswax cappings off the frames in order to extract the honey, we leave them in the yard for the bees to clean up. They get really excited, and start "robbing" the honey in a frenzy of excitement. We think you'll get the picture when you watch this video...

Friday, August 6, 2010

August 2010 Honey Extraction

It's honey harvest time! I thought I would show you what honey extraction is all about! We are finally working in our new "honey house" with our new 33 frame extractor. It is so much quicker than the old 4-frame hand-crank extractor we used to use. Now we load it up, flip on a switch, and it spins the honey out on its own! But we still have the time-consuming task of scraping the beeswax cappings from each frame. When the bees are finished filling a frame with honey and it is at the perfect moisture level, they "cap it off" with beeswax.Here Isaac is getting ready to scrape off the cappings with a hive tool. The cappings fall into a tank below, where the extra honey drips down into a bucket, and the beeswax will later be cleaned, melted down, and used in projects such as soap, candles, etc.
We slide a warm knife against the frame to remove the beeswax.
Look at all the delicious honey ready to ooze out of the frame... it weighs about 5 pounds. This year's Summer honey has a very light color from the clover and Canadian thistle blooms.
The frame is placed in the extractor, and when it is full we will turn it on so the honey can spin out. We keep it spinning for about 15 minutes.
The honey drips down into a bucket below. This honey includes chunks of beeswax, pollen, and even dead bee parts. We have to put this through a large mesh strainer in order to bottle it, but other than that... there is no processing. Pure, raw, honey... straight from the beehive.
We will have some of this honey for sale this weekend at the North Market. Stop by our booth to sample some of the freshest honey in Central Ohio!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Wedding bells are ringing...

Did I say in one of the last posts that I would be posting to the blog every week? Oops....
Big things have been happening at Honeyrun Farm. Becky has been replanting her fields and managing the crops that managed to not get drowned out in the early Summer rain. And in the meantime, she also got married! (In Alaska, on a Glacier, nonetheless). Yes, I'm serious! Pictures to follow shortly. We welcome Greg Swingle to the Honeyrun Family. I have looked through all my files and can't find a picture of the two together, but you can check out his work at www.gregswingle.com.
Isaac has been busy making splits of our beehives, and I have been arranging and growing wedding flowers. We also have been bottling little jars of honey for wedding favors. It is such a useful gift for wedding guests (one that doesn't sit around the house forever). And since honey never spoils, you can keep it and crack it open for a taste on your 50th wedding anniversary.

When things slow down I will add more photos, recipes, and stories about farm life at Honeyrun. Which at this rate, might happen about mid-December. Thanks for your patience.
~Jayne

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Wet.

Anyone who has been living in Ohio this Spring will know that it has been, to say the least, very wet. Becky's field was hit with a lot of rain and it seemed that the tile was clogged, which created a mucky, wet disaster. She lost all of her roots crops... turnips, beets, carrots, radishes, and even her potatoes. She lost her lettuces, some peppers and tomatoes, and some onions. I haven't yet heard if her sweet potatoes were damaged, but I really hope not... they are my favorite! Here are a few pictures of the damage... and these were taken 2 days after the heavy rains and after the field had drained quite a bit.
Becky plans to till everything under once it is dry enough and replant. That is pretty much her only choice. To see pictures of what it looked like right after it rained, click here.

Trying to create a ditch to allow the water to flow out of the fields.....

Monday, June 7, 2010

Introducing.... Bee Pollen!

We are offering a new product this year and I am so excited about it! Bee Pollen! So... what do you do with bee pollen, you ask? Eat it! Pollen itself is the male seed of flowers, required to fertilize the plant. It is used as a nutritional supplement that some people swear by. It contains an abundance of vitamins, minerals, proteins, amino-acids, and more. We have seen claims for using it for energy, weight loss, alleviating depression and migraine headaches, preventing cancer, etc...etc...etc... We won't make any of those claims here, but I must say I think this fresh pollen is quite tasty. Other times that I have tried pollen I thought it tasted like hay, in a chalky form that is kind of hard to swallow. The pollen we have been harvesting still has the chalky texture, but it has been surprisingly sweet and flavorful. It is great for adding to smoothies, sprinkling on salads, or just eating by the spoonful (followed by a drink of OJ).Here is a close-up picture where I tried to capture all the colors and textures of the different kinds of pollen. The bees gather pollen in little 'pollen sacs' on their legs. They use the pollen to feed to the baby bees. (Don't worry, we make sure there is plenty left for them).
It is harvested through the use of a pollen trap that goes on the bottom of the hive where the bees enter. See the unpainted wooden part where all the bees are trying to enter? As they enter through the pollen trap, the pollen is knocked off their legs and lands on a screen below. We empty the screen daily, and it is amazing to see the varieties of colors that accumulate throughout the day. You can tell the bees are gathering from different sources throughout the day, as the colors form in layers throughout the trap.
As I type, Isaac is out in the apiary pulling honey supers that will be extracted later this week. We are hoping to get a good harvest of Black Locust honey this week, which will be ready for market by Saturday. Maizy loves to help us "sort" honey as we bottle it. She is only 10 months old so honey is not a regular part of her diet yet... but we can tell she is counting down the days. She watches us eat honey with a look in her eyes that says, "I know that's something good... and I am going to get it." Until then... keep sorting those bottles Maizy. We will have a nice honey cake for you when you turn one!

Friday, June 4, 2010

A meal inspired by... Garlic Scapes


Now let me preface this post with saying that I do not consider myself a great cook, but rather someone who may have a few ideas to share about how to cook up some of the more unusual types of produce that is out there. If you go to the farmer's market tomorrow, you may find Garlic Scapes for sale. These are the tips of the garlic plant that form a white swan shaped neck, which emerge right around early June in central Ohio. The garlic plant forms this scape to produce seeds, however, by cutting the scapes we can encourage the plant to put more energy in creating bigger garlic bulbs. Thus.... the edible scapes can be added to a delicious stir-fry, giving a touch of garlicy flavor without too much spice. Just dice them up like you would scallions, throw them in with your other favorite vegetables for stir-frying, there you have it! I used whatever veggies I could find in our fridge, and I also added some pre-cooked turkey I had in the freezer. To add some flavor, I combined some soy sauce with our own fall honey, sauteed it all together, and served it with rice.
This meal will only take 20 mins, unless you have one of these clinging to your leg the whole time... which makes it harder to move around the kitchen quickly.
Have any other creative ideas about how to cook with garlic scapes? Post it in the comments section!

Friday, May 28, 2010

What's blooming at Honeyrun...

Gorgeous peonies from our neighbor Irma Fenstermaker... technically not blooming at Honeyrun... but just down the road. These flowers smelled amazing!Wow... is May almost over already? I try to post at least once a month, and I can't believe my time is almost up. I thought I would show you what is blooming around the farm, and save an update on what is growing at the produce farm for next month (read: I have been too busy to go over to Becky's fields to take pictures!). I finally got all my cut flowers in the ground, watered in... and now the weeding begins. We are also putting in a pumpkin/squash/gourd patch that needs planted, but there is still time for that, right?
This is a "Flamenco Red Hot Poker." Only one plant is blooming so far and I hope to eventually be able to sell them as cut flowers. Below is my sage and lavender, side by side in their splendor. The bees have been so happy with these two plants, and I am quite proud of their performance this year. Soon I will start snipping the lavender buds to make our herbal infused honey.
The picture below are... yes, you guessed it! Strawberries! But they are a special kind of strawberry: Alpine Yellow Wonder Strawberries which I started from seed from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds. I was under the impression that they were annuals, but they came back stronger than ever. I enjoy looking at the dainty little flowers almost as much as I enjoy the fruit. I would describe the taste as 'tutti-frutti." It is a blast of flavor, in such a small, tiny, morsel that it is hardly even comparable to a regular red strawberry.
The berries are so tiny I have never actually picked a pint to bring into the house. I simply go out to the garden, find a few and eat them right there on the spot. It is tricky to know exactly when they are ripe because they stay yellow. Usually the insects know the perfect ripeness, because there are sometimes small indentations on the surface of the fruit. Those are the tastiest of all. If any of you readers out there want to try these, I would not mind digging up some of my plants and giving them away (you have to come to the farm or market to get them, though). Just send me an email or post a message.
Okay, so you can call this a rushed, uneventful post... but it is May after all and we aren't even done planting everything yet! This summer I plan to add a lot of great posts with recipes, beautiful pictures of Becky's produce, and information about the benefits and uses of Naturally Granulated Honey: a new product we are selling at the market this year. Come see us at market this weekend... it is going to be beautiful!