Honey, I'm Homemade
To purchase a copy of the book:
Honey, I'm Homemade: Sweet Treats from the Beehive across the Centuries and around the World
No-Bake Bumblebee Cookies
1 cup peanut butter
3 Tbs honey
2/3 cup powdered skim milk
4 Tbs sesame seeds
5 Tbs crushed cereal (e.g., Cheerios)
Ready-made chocolate decorator icing
Mix together peanut butter and honey; add milk, sesame seeds, and crushed cereal. Dough should be easy to handle. Take a Tablespoon of dough and mold into the shape of a bee; insert four sliced almonds for wings (two on each side) and use ready-made chocolate decorator icing to add stripes. Refrigerate for approximately1/2 hour and then enjoy.
Yields 25 worker bees or 20 queen bees
Honey is the nectar of flowers, collected, transported, regurgitated, concentrated, biochemically processed and packaged by Apis mellifera, the Western honey bee.
Honey bees use honey as a source of energy during the winter and as a source of nutrients for their grubs during the summer
Advantages of cooking with honey:
Because honey is a super-saturated sugar solution, it absorbs water and keeps baked goods moist.
Honey bees break down the complex sugars they collect in nectar as they process honey so it is easy for humans to digest.
Due to the way that honey bees process nectar, honey is actually sweeter than the same amount of table sugar.
The color, flavor and texture of honey depend on the flower nectars that bees use to make it. There are over 300 types of varietal honeys available in the U.S.
Tips for cooking with honey:
To substitute honey for sugar, reduce the liquid in the recipe by a little (about 1/4 cup less liquid per cup of honey).
Honey is also sweeter than sugar, so use only about 3/4 cup honey for every cup of sugar in a recipe.
Honey is also a little acidic so adding a little more baking soda (about 1/2 teaspoon per cup of honey) can counteract the acidity.
In its liquid state, honey can be tricky to wrangle. Coating the measuring container with a little cooking oil will increase the likelihood that all of the measured quantities will leave the container on command. When mixing honey into a batter, pouring in a steady stream makes blending easier
Try different varietal honeys
In the U.S., most honey is blended -- mixed from a variety of floral sources and geographic locations to achieve a standard color and flavor. Varietal honeys, however, derived primarily from single source, are enjoying increasing popularity.
Each type offers a different honey-eating experience; like wine, honeys vary with locality, year, and (human) producer (vintner/beekeeper). Thus, honey varietals offer a flavor palette that can brighten, accentuate, or counterbalance other food elements.
Buy local honey
Buying local honey is one way to insure its purity; it also helps to keep beekeepers in business.
Honey bees, which are responsible for pollinating over 90 American crops, have experienced major declines in recent years and the future of American beekeeping is uncertain.
Honey has so much to offer beyond sweetness -- eating honey helps to keep honey bees in business, and busy honey bees help to sustain natural and agricultural ecosystems around the world.
December 16: Lunchbreak - No-bake Bumblebee Cookies
May Berenbaum, Honey, I'm Homemade: Sweet Treats from the Beehive across the Centuries and around the World, makes Bumblebee Cookies on the WGN-TV Midday News Lunchbreak
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