The girls gave us 33 quarts, 25 pints, 9 half-pints, and 1/2 gallon, most of which have been bartered and gifted away. That’s just under 13 gallons of honey. There were also some extraneous amounts of honey that might not have gotten to the right sugar content, making it susceptible to fermentation, so we took another gallon or two to make into honey wine. We’ve had honey wine off and on as a little aperitif or dessert drink since September.
2018’s harvest is lighter in color, sweeter in taste, and has greater potential to crystallize than our harvest from 2017. If we gave you some honey and it crystallized, not to worry. Stick it in your microwave. If, like us, you don’t have a microwave, give it a hot water bath. We’ve been enjoying it as honey butter.
The honey wine is a real treat and probably should only be made when one has access to lots of honey. In a half-gallon jar or other large glass vessel, make 2:1 to water to honey. We took large clumps of rosemary from the backyard, boiled it, and let sit for the afternoon, ending up with a strong rosemary tea. This bitterness of the rosemary pairs so nicely with the honey. Stir this concoction 2 to 3 times a day for probably around a week or once the bubbles start forming. Store in your jar with a cloth kept over, so wild yeast can form in the honey wine. Once the bubbles start, fermentation is happening, decide how long to let it go. A few days is fine. Then put in the fridge and enjoy as desired in small glasses.