Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Bee or the Honey

The honey of the BEE

Chris Fortune Jan 2008


I remember my first bee experience very well, I was saving a lone bee from the torture of my two older brothers, rather chuffed with myself for having risked life and limb for the little fellow, he turned around and stung me  - his savor – getting the fright of my life I then promptly squashed him not realizing that he would pass away soon


My future experiences with bees would be much happier, donning a apiarist suit I would help my future father in law do bee work in the Marlborough sounds and down south – often a long trail of bees tracking us down as we moved hives around – ensuring that they were in the right place at the right time to collect honey and pollen


In my kitchen Honey is a important part of my recipe repertoire – it adds natural flavors and sweetness which cannot be found in Sugars, and it has its own taste characteristics and is a unique and nutritionally important food source.  Honey can be substituted into most recipes and by using different types  of Honey and each will have its own flavors depending on where the hives have been located. I love Clover honey on toast and Manuka or Beech honey drizzled on desserts or fruit.  Bee Pollen is recognized as a super food and contains all the essential minerals and components of life, with  a one teaspoon dose of pollen taking one bee working eight hours a day for one month to gather. Each bee pollen pellet itself, contains over two million flower pollen grains and one teaspoonful contains over 2.5 billion grains of flower pollen.


 Now a interesting fact that never crossed my mind when I was first stung when saving the lone bee is that old Beekeepers seldom suffer from arthritis or rheumatism and bee venom is used directly as a treatment of joint conditions. Ummmm ---  could be onto something here…..to be continued 

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