Monthly Archives: June 2012

Thankful Thursday: Honey Bees

Ok, minions. Are you ready for this?

I’ve had the overwhelming urge to bee keep lately. And whatever look you just gave the computer, 30 people have given me in the past two or three weeks when I express interest.

But bees are awesome. And they’re crucial to the things that mean the most in my life: food. Without bees, there would be no pollinating (unless you count those NASTY creatures called flies). And I kinda, sorta love them. A lot.

Did you know a lot of farms (especially almond farmers) rent bees during February/March to pollinate their trees? They do! I wrote all about it last year on Coronado Patch. The particular farm I wrote about (Hopkins Ag) has 4,000 hives come in. 4,000.

Courtesy Hopkins Ag

These tiny, fuzzy creatures are responsible for producing yummy almonds, amongst other tasty crops. Kinda crazy. And for some reason, people fear bees? They say it’s because of the stinger, but I’ve met plenty of people who sting much worse than a tiny little bee. Um, and how can you be scared of something that produces honey? I mean, really.

If you need more convincing, go to your Netflix account (and if you don’t have Netflix…well, how else are you getting your Saved By the Bell and Dawson’s Creek fixes?!) and watch the documentary Queen of the Sun: What Are the Bees Telling Us?

It’s a look inside the necessity of honey bees, colony collapse disorder and beekeeepers all over the world. It’s well-worth your time and I promise you you’ll fall in love with the cute black-and-yellow guys (Ok, who just started singing Wiz?). And it will definitely make you appreciate your food that much more.

Thank you, honey bees. You are magical and oh-so-necessary for us. Queen of the Sun states that every farm should bee keep on their property. Any farms out there reading this, I’m totally willing to start one up on your farm. Seriously.

Fun Fact: “Melissa” means “honey-bee” in Greek. Hello, fate.

Wordless Wednesday: Sushi and Sake

Taken with an old iPhone, but you get the idea. Psst: that’s bacon sushi on the left

Tasty Tip Tuesday: Grating Cheese

Can you guys believe I fell off the wagon already?

Don’t answer that.

My apologies to all my veggies out there. Meatless Monday was non existent this week in my kitchen. Unless you count the whole grain pasta I made and then proceeded to dump jarred sauce on top and call it a night. Yes, I’m like the aerobics instructor that gets lipo or the nutritionist that makes late-night Carl’s Jr. runs.

But I’ll make a pathetic attempt to redeem myself with this week’s Tasty Tip.

Grating cheese seems to be everyone’s least favorite job. But there are some tricks to make the grating go easy and fast.

1) Get your cheese cold: The colder the cheese, the firmer it is, making it easier to grate. Semi-soft cheeses, like mozarella, can be put in the freezer for about 30 minutes before you grate it to help ease the grating. Just remember to let all cheeses, even that rock-hard parmesan, come to room temp after you’ve grated it. Its taste is amped up at room temp over colder climates.

2) Don’t just grate down: I see people grating the cheese downward, then they lift the cheese from the grater surface and start all over. No need. Simply rub it up and down the grater, like you would if you lived out on the prairie and had to wash clothes on a washboard.

3) Use a food processor: Got a lot of cheese to shred? Drop it in and watch the magic.  Lotso cheese in not-so-lotso seconds.

Anyone minions here ever get cheese elbow? How do you grate your cheeses?

Wordless Wednesday: Vintage Cherries

Don’t you want to pick one off the screen and eat it?

Tasty Tip Tuesday: Putting Out Grease Fires

The kitchen is somewhere where I feel pretty comfortable. But grease fires scare the $#!t out of me.

One of the first things I ever learned in my high school Home Ec class was how to put out a grease fire. And it’s really something everyone should know, not just hotty hot firefighters.

Baking soda is the trick here. You need a lot of it to extinguish big fires, but if you get some of the salty substance on the fire as soon as it starts, you should be fine. Here are some steps to take when encountering a grease fire, which you hopefully will never have to take.

1) Turn off the heat and don’t move the pan around.

2) If you can, cover it up with a lid (basic physics tells us that no oxygen=no fire. Or something like that.)

3) Douse with baking soda.

My tip here is to always keep a large container of baking soda near the stove. Just in case. It’s kind of how like moms keep a first aid kit in their purse, complete with advil, midol, antiseptics, burn ointment, bandaids, cortisone, insulin, antihistamines, umbrellas, goulashes, extra underwear …you know, the whole nine yards. They’re always prepared.

Not as hot as a fireman, but it’ll do

Anyone here actually encounter a grease fire? did you take the appropriate measures and douse with baking soda or salt?

Meatless Monday: Beet Burger

So, I took a long leave of absence, in case ya didn’t notice.

I didn’t even ask the bossman. I just did it. She let me come back graciously, but not without a little reprimanding.*Licks wounds*

Anyway, sorry to leave you all hanging like that. I needed a break. Work got crazy. I’m poor. It was too hot to blog. The cat scratched up my fingers so I couldn’t type. The dog needed to be let outside. [Insert more non sequitur excuses here].

The good news is, I’m back. You know, until there’s some emergency, like toenail painting or something.

Are we ready for a Meatless Monday recipe, my little veggies out there?! This week’s is all about the beets. The root veggies, not these ones:

I found a great beet burger recipe from veggie blog The Hearty Herbivore. She’s got some awesome stuff on her site. Take the time to check her recipes out.

Basically, she takes beets, shreds them up and mixes them with other yummy things, like barbecue sauce, peanut butter (yup, PB), onions, mustard and some herbs. You won’t miss the beef with these. And if you’re scared of beets, try them this way first before you eat them any other way. They’ll make you a beet believer.

Click here for the recipe and Happy Monday! It’s good to be back.

Chioggia and Golden Beets


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