Honey Archives

Baked Ham

Posted on June 28, 2016 by Leave a comment

One of our favorite ways to eat ham is a home cooked, baked ham with cloves and pineapple. Several times a year, half and whole hams are placed on sale with a significant price discount. Easter is a common time for ham to go on sale. underwater case iphone 7 These hams can be cooked when purchased or frozen for use months later. The meat of a baked ham has a flavor similar to deli ham which is very expensive. However you can bake a ham yourself for about 75% less per pound. Baking and preserving a large ham is relatively simple and easy to do. iphone 6 lanyard case These hams are already fully cooked, but are normally cooked a little more to add flavor.

Ready to remove pineapple slices & cloves - then slice

Ready to remove pineapple slices & cloves – then slice

When selecting a half ham you may notice two different types of ham shapes in the packaging. A whole ham is originally cut from the pig with the portion connected to he hip on one end (butt end) and the part connecting to the knee on the other end (shank end). When they cut a whole ham in half to be packaged, the shape of the half ham will look a little different depending on which half of the ham you are looking at. The bone inside the ham will look different. The ham cooks and tastes the same, however if you cook a lot of hams, you may develop a preference. The simplest way to prepare a baked ham is to follow the simple directions on the package, by taking off the packaging, placing it in a baking pan, and putting it in the oven for the specified amount of time, at the specified temperature. Usually baking at 325 degrees for 15-20 minutes per pound. A fresh ham would need to be completely cooked for a much longer period of time.
Whole cloves

Whole cloves

Our recipe is for a ham baked with cloves and pineapple, which adds a clove spice flavor and a sweet pineapple juice flavor enhanced with honey. A clove is the dried flower bud of a tropical tree, grown in the Maluku Islands, India and Pakistan, with the botanical name Syzygium aromatic. We purchased KrogerĀ® brand cloves which were of very high quality. These cloves were half the price of the branded clove products for the same or better quality. iphone 8 plus ted baker case
Typical pre-cooked baking ham

Typical pre-cooked baking ham

Ingredients 1) One half or whole ham with package and plastic “bone” guard removed 2) Whole cloves 3) One can of pineapple slices, juice set aside (although you could also use pineapple chunks) 4) Honey 5) Toothpicks (we were out of toothpicks and substituted popsicle sticks broken in half and carved to a point)
Inserting whole cloves into the ham

Inserting whole cloves into the ham

Putting it all together 1) Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees 2) Place the ham in a baking pan flat side down 3) Insert the cloves an inch or two apart evenly spaced all over the surface of the ham 4) Attach the rings of pineapple with a toothpick evenly spaced over the ham 5) Combine pineapple juice with some honey as a glaze to baste on the ham as it cooks (optional) 6) Place the ham in the oven and bake per directions, 15-20 minutes per pound at 325 degrees 7) Baste 3-4 times with the pineapple/honey juice as the ham cooks 8) When done, remove the ham from the oven, take off the pineapple slices and remove the cloves 9) Wait about 10 minutes before slicing, (however it will be almost irresistible not to sample small bits of ham and pineapple)
Adding pineapple rings to the ham

Adding pineapple rings to the ham

We liked adding the pineapple/honey juice basting liquid. You could also do it with just the pineapple juice alone. It does create a sweet tasting accumulation of meat juices in the bottom of the baking pan. We used these meat juices to make a nice ham gravy to be served over mashed potatoes. When the ham is out of the oven, let it cool down for about 10 minutes. While you are waiting you can remove the pineapple and cloves. If you are going to make gravy from the meat juices, now is the time to transfer the ham to a serving platter. iphone 8 case baby pink Next drain the meat juices into a sauce pan for making the gravy. We served our dinner with ham, pineapple slices, mashed potatoes and ham gravy, with asparagus. bape phone case iphone 7 plus It was delicious!!
Ham dinner!

Ham dinner!

Preparing to store leftover ham We always have leftover ham and enjoy eating it in a variety of dishes, from simple sandwiches to omelets, scalloped and au gratin potatoes, pizza, split pea soup, etc. We prepare “chunk” ham, sliced ham and diced ham. The first step is to go through each piece separating the chunks along natural separation points. iphone 6 plus cases ringke Next we trim away the fat and any other undesireable pieces. We save the bone for making split pea soup. You could also add the bone to mustard, turnip or collard green preparation.
Preparing leftover ham for storage

Preparing leftover ham for storage

Depending on how much ham is left and what cuts are available, we prepare the ham accordingly. When in doubt, we freeze the ham as a chunk, which can be thawed later. Using this method, we have a lot of options for using the ham in the future.
Sliced ham for sandwiches, diced ham for various recipes

Sliced ham for sandwiches, diced ham for various recipes

We package the ham according to our expected use. Since we use the ham a little at a time, our packages are small. We make sure that our packages are labeled with the date. It is important not leave the ham in the freezer for more than 1 or 2 months, according to foodsafety.gov.

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Genesee Valley Produce Auction – Open for 2016

Posted on June 24, 2016 by Leave a comment

Since we wrote our last blog about the Genesee Valley Produce Auction, we have been asked, where it is, how to contact the auction, and how to get there? We called and verified that our information for 2016 is up to date. iphone 8 plus metallic case We hope our directions and updates help you have a great day at the auction!! Genesee Valley Produce Auction 8855 County Road 3 Centerville, NY 14029 1/4 mile east of “downtown” Centerville on the road towards Hume/Fillmore, NY. Centerville is a small town in northwest Allegany County, NY, at a crossroads. The most notable business in downtown Centerville is Uncle Tom’s Kabin which is a small grocery store. stag iphone 6 case Go 1/4 mile towards Hume/Fillmore and The Genesee Valley Produce Auction will be on the south side of the road. iphone 8 case buddha If you are coming from Hume/Fillmore, it will be on the south side of the road just before you enter the village. glitter cat iphone 7 case You can’t miss it!! Auction Days: Usually lasts an hour or two depending on how much is up for sale. iphone 8 plus liverpool case Tuesday – 10:00 AM till over Friday – 10:00 Am till over For questions call: This is an Amish Auction and contact by phone is only available at specific times. silicon case iphone 6 585-567-8640 from 9:00 till about noon on auction days 585-567-4312 other days between 8:00 – 8:30 AM

Genesee Valley Produce Auction, LLC

Genesee Valley Produce Auction, LLC

Update 5/24/16: The auction has resumed for 2016 and will continue until the end of October. iphone 7 plus case with screen protector The first annual Quilt, Furniture & Craft Auction will be held June 25th, 2016.

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Parmesan Popovers – Bridget Moynahan Recipe

Posted on June 13, 2016 by Leave a comment

We read a recipe for Parmesan Popovers in a recent issue of People Magazine which was written by Bridget Moynahan. We decided to make the recipe and it turned out very well. travel iphone 6 plus case We are re-publishing it here with just a couple small changes.

On the Platter! They Shrunk a Little!

On the Platter! They Shrunk a Little!

Ingredients: 2 Tablespoons of butter to grease the muffin tin. 2 Large eggs at room temperature. esr iphone 6 plus case 1 Cup of Half-n-Half. 1 Cup of all purpose or bread flour. iphone 6 case with card holder and screen protector 1/2 teaspoon of salt. 1 Tablespoon of finely grated Parmesan Cheese
Just Out of the Oven!

Just Out of the Oven!

Putting it all together: 1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees. gear4 oxford iphone 7 case 2) Grease a muffin pan for 12 muffins with the butter. 3) In a medium bowl combine the eggs and half-n-half and uniformly mix. wooden phone case iphone 6 4) In a large bowl mix flour, salt, and grated parmesan cheese. sequin phone case iphone 7 5) Pour in the egg mixture and beat until only tiny lumps remain. 6) Preheat the muffin pan in the oven for about 2 minutes. 7) Right before you take the pan out of the oven, whisk or beat the batter again. 8) Fill each cup in the muffin pan just a little less than half way. 9) Bake for 25 minutes without opening the oven!!
Split Open! Ready to Eat!

Split Open! Ready to Eat!

There are a multitude of ways to eat a popover, warm with butter, or butter and jam, or filled with a strawberry & whipped cream; the list goes on!! I ate mine with butter and strawberry jam and it was luscious!! Kitchen Tips! If you forgot to take your eggs out of the refrigerator to bring them up to room temperature, we put them in a bowl of hot tap water while we are preparing the recipe and they warm up significantly in about 10 minutes.

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Honey Extraction

Posted on June 12, 2016 by Leave a comment

At the current time we only have a few honey bee hives and we do not have enough volume to use our large honey extractor. When we extract the honey from only a few shallow supers, we use the old antique honey extractor that we bought second hand over 30 years ago. This extractor is easy to operate and easy to clean. We are fortunate to have some beautiful fresh honeycomb to extract.

Frames of honey ready to be extracted

Frames of honey ready to be extracted

The extractor is a basically a round tub with a drain and a hand crank. The crank turns a mechanism that holds two frames of honey at a time. Once one side of the frame is extracted, the frame is reversed and the other side is extracted. The honey flows outside of the frames by centrifugal force. Once it hits the side of the tub, it gradually flows to the bottom of the extractor. After extracting several frames, the honey is drained from the bottom of the extractor.
Antique hand crank honey extractor

Antique hand crank honey extractor

The honey bees seal the wax honey cells with a cap once they are filled and the honey is ready to be sealed. The honeybees use their wings to create ventilation in the hive to remove excess water from the flower nectar, from which the honey is made. Once the sugar content of the honey is the proper concentration, the cells are sealed. Prior to extraction, the caps need to be removed. To do his we use an electric hot knife which cuts and melts the caps at the same time. full cover iphone 7 plus case The removed wax caps are saved to use later to make candles. pink iphone 6 case shockproof
The wax caps are removed with a hot knife

The wax caps are removed with a hot knife

Once both sides of a frame have had its caps removed, it is immediately placed in the extractor. When two frames are ready for extraction, the extracting process can begin. iphone 7 phone cases charge You need to have two frames in the extractor for proper balance. An evenly balanced extractor will have less vibration and the honey will be easier to extract.
The caps removed the frame is ready to go into the extractor

The caps removed the frame is ready to go into the extractor

After the honey has been extracted it can be stored in large plastic five gallon storage containers. A spigot can be attached to the container for bottling. full cover iphone 8 case When the honey is initially extracted it will contain a variety of natural impurities which originate from the original frame. The impurities in the honey include, wax pieces, and propolis. Propolis is a “glue” secreted by the honeybees to fill spaces in the hive. iphone 8 case rose gold If you let the storage container set for a few days the impurities will rise to the top. The honey is heavier than the impurities. This allows the pure raw honey to be dispensed from the bottom of the container for bottling.

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Late Summer Planted Whitetail Clover

Posted on June 29, 2015 by Leave a comment

In August of 2014 we decided to expand our perennial acreage of Whitetail Institute whitetail clover. hermes iphone 7 plus case The plot areas that we chose were newly cleared areas where annual brassicas had been planted the previous year. iphone 8 plus torro case We had our ground prepared but were in a little bit of a hurry due to some expected heavy rain. We manually spread our seed with a canvas type cyclone seeder with a hand crank. In one area we over seeded some rye as a nurse crop just to see how it might work. iphone 7 phone cover cases

Late Summer 2014 Planted Whitetail Clover

Late Summer 2014 Planted Whitetail Clover

We were not able to check on this plot again until July of 2015 when we mowed it to about 10 inches tall. You can see how the plot has filled in nicely and has created a great source of food for both our whitetail deer and our honeybees. We hope to get some clover flavored honey.
Whitetail Institute Whitetail Clover

Whitetail Institute Whitetail Clover

When we checked on the plot with the rye nurse crop in July, the rye was about five feet tall with grain heads in the dough stage. iphone 8 plus battery case red A nurse crop basically functions as a protective barrier by providing a wind break, and shade for the germinating clover, helping it to become established in adverse conditions. We hope we mowed the rye in time to kill the seed in the grain heads. If we did not, we may get some secondary germination this fall. black iphone 8 case The remnants of the rye straw was still visible in July, but will gradually decompose and disappear. iphone 6 cases spurs The decomposing rye will add calcium and nitrogen to the soil. In an open winter, without snow, you might expect to see a better stand with a nurse crop than you would in a stand without the nurse crop.

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Small Wildlife Pond

Posted on June 28, 2015 by Leave a comment

Over 50 years ago, just before my father bought this property, the previous owner created this small pond in what was a field at that time. iphone 8 plus 360 case screen protector This is a spring fed pond about 60 feed long, 30 feet wide, and about 3 feet deep. uag iphone 7 plus folio case Most likely it was made for horses or cattle and possibly for wildlife as he was an avid deer hunter. scotland iphone 6 case Over the years it started to become filled in and no longer much of a pond. About three years ago we had it re-dug for about $300.00. It has been fun to see it being used by wildlife. The pond is also near our apiary and it makes a close source of water for the honeybees. The muddy water in the photograph is where deer have recently come to drink. samurai iphone 6 case

Small Wildlife Pond South View

Small Wildlife Pond South View

The pond is at the edge of a field where our deer food plots are located, which also makes this spot attractive to the deer. Deer require a water source and this is specially helpful to them in dry periods of the year. It is the only site for quite a distance that has a permanent pool of water that can be used by our local amphibians to lay their eggs in the spring. iphone 7 case giraffe We have a variety of toads, frogs, and newts which utilize this location.
Small Wildlife Pond North View

Small Wildlife Pond North View

The pond does require some maintenance. Since we have re-dug the pond, we have made an effort to control the vegetation that wants to grow up around the pond. We do this with a combination of herbicide use, a bushhog (rotary cutter), and a string trimmer. We are certain that a lot of additional wildlife species use the pond, they are just more difficult to observe during a casual walk by.

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Honeybee Survival Winter 2015

Posted on June 24, 2015 by Leave a comment

The winter in western NY in 2015 was characterized as extremely cold, with a lot of snow and many successive cold days which made it unusually difficult for honeybees to survive the winter. This was our forth year of trying to overwinter honeybee colonies. We had been getting Italian honeybee packages sourced from the state of Georgia. We were not able to keep any of these colonies overwinter. tech 21 iphone 7 case rose gold In 2014 we purchased two nucs of Carniolan honeybees from a local beekeeper in Rushford, NY. iphone 6 plus motorbike case This beekeeper has 400 hives and has been successful overwintering his hives. One of these two Carniolan colonies survived and was quite vigorous by the first of July 2015. catalyst iphone 8 plus case When opening the hive, both deep hive bodies were full of brood and the one super was almost completely filled with honey. There appeared to be little room for additional bees. iphone 7 phone shockproof cases

Honeybee Winter Survival 2015

Honeybee Winter Survival 2015

We are only able to visit this location occasionally, which forces us to be absentee beekeepers and this leads to making decisions and waiting to see the results some months later. iphone 6 portable charger phone case We needed to make two basic decisions 1) How are we going to manage our mite population? 2)How are we going to manage space within the hive? The assumptions are that we have a healthy queen and that we have a mite infestation at some level. Controlling mites and managing space will impact both honey production and overwintering potential for the winter of 2015/2016. apple cases iphone x We treated this hive with 2 Apiguard trays above the brood chambers to suppress the varroa mites. We additionally added two medium depth Illinois supers plus one hive body on top. The purpose of adding the hive body on top was done for two reasons 1) As we disassembled the two hives that did not make it through the winter, we had hive body frames that still had some honey in the frames which needed to be cleaned before storing this equipment. 2) We wanted to add additional top space to possibly prevent swarming and/or provide additional storage space for surplus honey. This hive is surrounded by the constant presence of nectar producing white clover flowers. We have established approximately 2 acres of Whitetail Institute Whitetail clover. iphone 6 case eminem You may notice the 3 additional “ventilation” holes in the Illinois supers. We added these holes to provide winter hive ventilation, and to provide an additional hive entrance in deep snow. We made the decision to leave these holes when we added the Illinois supers. We will check this hive in early October to see how the bees adapted to the structure that we have left them. Hopefully the bees will be ready for winter and have left a little honey to share.
Carniolan Honeybee Survives Severe Winter in NY State

Carniolan Honeybee Survives Severe Winter in NY State

Note: The electric fence surrounding the apiary is a “Bear Fence” to keep out the local population of Black Bears.

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California Cantaloupes!

Posted on June 18, 2015 by Leave a comment

We were traveling near Bakersfield, California and came upon this very large field of cantaloupes. The Romans, in Italy, learned to grow cantaloupes from the Egyptians. The cantaloupe is named after the town of Cantalupo in Italy, so cantaloupes have been grown for long time. iphone 8 plus phone case with card holder Approximately 75% of the cantaloupes grown in the United States of America are grown in CA. Bakersfield is located in the lower San Joaquin Valley, sometimes called the Central Valley. Cantaloupes in the Central Valley are planted from early April until mid summer. The fruits require about 90 days before they are ready for harvest which takes place between June and October. During this growing period the weather is normally hot and dry which makes irrigation a necessity. The low humidity and lack of rainfall helps prevent foliar and fruit diseases. iphone 6 case gel liquid It is important that the cantaloupes are ripe before they are picked because up to 50% of the sugar content is created in the last week of ripening. frida kahlo iphone 7 case The melon is ripe when it’s color changes from green to a yellow / tan color and the “netting” shows a distinct contrast. Melon ripeness can also be determined when the fruit separates from the vine or “slip stage”. The sugar content stops increasing at this stage. The melon will continue to ripen after harvest and become juicer. snugg iphone 7 case grey Cantaloupes should be refrigerated after they are cut open.

California Cantaloupes!

California Cantaloupes!

Similar to other types of melons, there are both male and female flowers on the same cantaloupe plant. iphone 8 case soft touch The male flowers develop first, followed by the female flowers. Honeybees are required for pollination. Honeybees are brought to the field by a beekeeper and placed surrounding the whole field of cantaloupes. The placement of the bee hives helps achieve uniform pollination and helps maximize yields of premium fruit. Since the honeybees require pollen and nectar for their survival, the honeybee hives are removed after blossoming is completed. The honeybees are then moved to another location, where another food source is available. The beekeeper is paid for this service which is critical to the success of so many agricultural crops in CA.

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California Almonds!

Posted on June 17, 2015 by Leave a comment

California produces 100% of the almonds in the United States of America and 75% of the almonds in the world. Spanish Franciscan Padres introduced almond trees into what would become California, in the mid 1700s. iphone 8 plus phone case space The almonds are grown in the Central Valley in California. Almond trees start to bloom as the weather gets warmer in January and February. Almonds are not self pollinating and require at least two different varieties to successfully produce fruit. Honeybees are required for maximum pollination. After pollination a fuzzy gray/green hull begins to grow which will contain the almond kernel.

Fuzzy Green Almonds in Mid June

Fuzzy Green Almonds in Mid June

The hull continues to grow, harden and mature until July. iphone 7 phone cases 360 shockproof Next the hull will begin to split and open. From mid August until late October the split will open exposing the almond shell and causing it to dry, as well as the kernel inside the shell. iphone x transparent case To harvest, the trees are shaken with a mechanical “tree shaker”. glass case iphone x The nuts are allowed to dry further on the orchard floor and then swept into rows where they are picked up mechanically. During hulling the shells are separated from the kernels. winnie the pooh phone case iphone 8 After harvest, in November and December, the almond tree begins to start the whole process over again by developing new flower buds for next years crop. Right now the biggest challenge to growing almonds is the extended drought in California which has already had a limiting impact on almond production.

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Honey Bee Colonies Survive Over Winter!

Posted on June 15, 2015 by Leave a comment

Our neighbor walked up to evaluate the Honey Bee Hives (Colonies) a day or two ago. iphone 8 case hot pink We have very good neighbors!! What she observed, surprised us! We had three Honey Bee Hives overwintering in western New York State, which she observed all showed activity indicating that they have survived an unusually cold snowy winter. iphone 8 case plain The previous two winters we had lost all our hives over the winter. detachable iphone 6 case We made some changes last spring and summer in the way we attended to our Honey Bees. First we changed our package bee supplier to a local beekeeper who has been successful in overwintering his colonies. We are now using a Carniolan Honey Bee which is native to the southern portion of the Austrian Alps in Europe. These bees overwinter as smaller clusters and increase colony size rapidly in the spring after the first pollen becomes available. dean russo iphone 7 case They also have a tendency to be active gathering pollen and nectar in cooler temperatures, like those in western NY. We are hoping the Carniolan Honey Bees also have some resistance to infestations of mites which currently is the biggest enemy of the Honey Bee. jet black iphone 7 case The second thing we did was treat for mites in mid summer to reduce the population of mites in our hives. iphone 6 case soft leather We believe this will help with the overall health of the colonies and help them overwinter successfully. iphone 7 plus hard case We will check the Honey bees, in person, in May.

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