Honey, Honeybees and Pollinators
February 4, 2020
We’ve been keeping honeybees for about 8 years now at the Yellow Door kitchen garden in Ballydougan and they are such amazing little insects. We currently have 4 hives and hopefully all the girls will have survived the winter. Bees and other pollinators are so important to global food
production and they need our protection.
Did you know that bees are responsible for the pollination of all the fruit, vegetables and nuts that grow above ground, about 1/3 of everything we eat, contributing £651 million to the UK economy per year?
Bees must visit 2 million flowers, travelling for 55000 miles to make a pound of honey. A worker honey bee will make 1/12 of a teaspoon in its lifetime.
Natural honey is the only food which contains all the minerals necessary for life and because it has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, it will keep almost indefinitely. 3000 year old edible honey has been found in Egyptian tombs.
If you web search “health benefits of honey” about 1.6 million results come up, but primarily we use it for its fantastic flavour and sweetness.
We use honey for so many things in the kitchen. Here are some favourites…
- To drizzle on porridge or yoghurt
- In smoothies
- For salad dressing
- To add to sweet and sour dishes
- To drizzle over roasting carrots and parsnips
- To caramelise nuts to have with ice cream
- As a glaze for pork and chicken
- Honey can be used to sweeten and balance spicy food
- On toast or pancakes
- In hot whiskey
- In mulled cider
- To make honeycomb
- To eat out of the jar just as it is to soothe a sore throat
Buy local, raw honey if you can and use this in your cold dishes where the complexity of flavours is more pronounced. If you’re going to heat it, or cook with it, you don’t need to be as particular about the type of honey you buy.< Back to News