honey bee

Rich by the gallon

20120927-084508.jpg Raw honey arrived from Silverbow! It's honey produced from the region of country I live in, the Northwest. This is 60 lbs of Blackberry flower honey. Its becoming my go-to honey for fruit preservation; sugary, straightforward, with mild fruit notes. It is so satisfying to scale honey out of this bucket when I'm measuring for preserves. Like I learned from working at Theo Chocolate and handling equally large quantities of corn syrup, the best way to move between these buckets and the food scale is with a big silver spoon dipped into the blond amber, toggled one way then the other with the flick of my wrist to prevent drips and plop! Honey sliding over cut fruit ready to macerate for a day or two.

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Nectarines kept under the surface of their own juices. This is maceration; fruit, honey, lemon.

Thursday at the Market

It's been over a hundred degrees in parts of Eastern Washington where so much of the fruit I use in the preserves grows. I wondered how this would reflect at the market. What would have popped and what would be waning? The fruit looked similar to last week, maybe a few more fuzzing, softening cherries to tease out from the tangles of stems and fruit I picked out of the vendor's plastic tub. Also too, more blueberries, bigger zucchinis and the arrival of golden raspberries or maybe I just didn't catch them last week because I was obsessing over Apriums. I was on a heavy duty fruit run at the Queen Anne Farmer's today. I think I almost busted my basket getting the goods home. Certain farms, Billy's Gardens and Mair Taki come to mind immediately, separate their goods into 1sts and 2nds for the market. The 2nds mean cheap prices and the product's usually got to be used fast. But the 2nds Apricots at Billy's were gorgeous, small, but blush-gold-colored, and firm. Their imperfection? smaller-than-a-pin dots on the skin, the sales person pointed out. My next preserves project is to combine those Apricots with the Rainier Cherries I stocked up on at the stand opposite to Billy's.

After a 5 Day Weekend

Image Nova had many beautiful bees, blossoms, and jars drawn and ready to look at as we figured out the next step for the label. She had some scissors handy so I cut out the drawings and mocked them up, placing different configurations of blossom, bee and jar together. Nova had drawn something like 12 different honey bees and 8 different takes on the plum blossom, some with the branch attached and others without. Picking out the right bee was the hardest part.

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They were all fabulous and at first I leaned towards the one on top. It's stately. But then the bottom one was really dynamic looking, maybe even ferocious, so I ended up going for the one in the middle. It looked, I dunno, cuddly?

Picking out the flower and jar for the label was easy. I loved these two.  Image

Nova is drawing the designs into Illustrator this week. Yeep, very excited.

While anticipating that I'm watching these Anise Hyssop Blossoms marry the Grappa I drowned them in on Saturday. I put some honey in there too. I imagine it'll be ready for Christmas-time gifts.

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P.S.

Here's the Strawberry cake.

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