MENU

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Honey makes me funny



Honey doesn't really make me funny but that is just a little saying we have in our house!  Honey really is the most fascinating food.  I am not going to pretend to fully understand the incredible magic of honey making but I did get very excited recently when we were lucky enough to get a bucket of honey and honeycomb literally straight from some local bee hives.  In amongst the honeycomb, we could still smell the smoke used to calm the bees 

Last weekend we enjoyed an indulgent morning tea of home made Turkish style bread with ricotta, strawberries and honey.


Fresh honey in the house gave me the perfect excuse to make this delicious cake using some locally grown oranges.  



Recipe from Earth Garden magazine, June/August edition 2012.


Walnut, Orange and Honey Cake


Ingredients
1 1/2 cups walnuts, toasted and chopped
1 cup plain flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1 pinch salt
4 large eggs
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup orange juice
3 tablespoons dark rum
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon orange zest, finely grated
a handful extra walnuts


Syrup
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon orange zest


Method
Preheat oven to 180°.  Line and grease a 22cm spring-form cake pan.


Grid the walnuts in a food processor until finely ground but not powdery.  Add flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and pulse briefly to combine.  


In a stand mixer, beat eggs until frothy, then add sugar and honey, continuing to beat until thick and pale, 3-4 minutes.  Lower speed and add walnut/flour mixture in steps until just mixed.  Add orange juice, orange zest, rum and olive oil and beat just until combined.


Pour batter into a prepared pan, scatter extra walnuts over the top.  Bake until tester comes out clean, approximately 40 minutes.


In the meantime put the honey, sugar and zest in the saucepan for the syrup, bring to the boil and remove from the heat before adding the juice.  Poke holes in the top of the cake while hot and pour the warm syrup over the top.  Leave for at least 10 minutes to soak in before serving.  


Do you love honey?
Do you have bees?
Do you have a favourite honey recipe?


PS I am fortunate enough to have written a guest blog for ABC Open about the delights of winter.  Feel free to visit before the winter is over!

27 comments :

  1. A fellow honey lover here too.
    I find it amazing the whole process of honey from the bees collecting the pollen to the people collecting the honey at the end.
    And I love how honey never goes off too.
    x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Zara, the process is amazing!

      Delete
  2. Hi Jane, today I am baking "your" bread and now this delicious cake too.
    I love honey (but NOT in tea - yuk!)
    We have bees in our garden which is lovely and very special these days.
    For honey, we are lucky enough to have good local honey in the Swan Valley, just up the track a bit.
    I was washing my face with honey for a while, my skin felt lovely and soft.
    Read the article, lovely. Made me hungry and nostalgic for smokos (worked as a governess on a couple of sheep stations in the olden days) x

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh, you're so lucky to have fresh honey! One day we hope to have our own beehives.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Beehives would be great, I agree :)

      Delete
  4. My husband is obsessed by honey! We usually have buckets of it lurking in the cupboards. I'm not such a fan, but I do love honey in my tea and also honey on toast with my PB.

    PS - did you know about this food blogger conference in Adelaide on November? http://eatdrinkblog.org/ I'm hoping to come for it...hopefully you can too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks the tip Miss Piggy, my application is sent :)

      Delete
  5. Nothing as nice as fresh honey. We are lucky to have friends with hives. I love how the taste changes each season with different flower/trees blooming.

    ReplyDelete
  6. A honey sandwich is one of life's ultimate comfort foods!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, I couldn't agree more! Must be enjoyed with a glass of milk, too!

      Delete
    2. Yes Kate...and so easy :)

      Delete
  7. Bread just out of the oven. Eating it, dripping with butter, as we speak.
    Delicious! Thanks for the recipe Jane. Only problem, KitchenAid has died, so I can't try cake until its serviced.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm crazy for honey. We had neighbors and friends who kept bees when I was a child and I loved the whole process- so amazing! That cake sounds fantastic. Honey, oranges, and nuts = perfection :)

    xo Lilly

    ReplyDelete
  9. I love honey on crumpets and toast, and maybe if I'm feeling exotic over some greek yoghurt to remind me of a time i spent in greece, manymany years ago. At the time of the year, my kitchen is so cold that honey crystallises, and even if i microwave it, it's never quite the same!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Liz...man it must be cold in your part of the world :)

      Delete
  10. Wow Jane both the cake and the bread with strawberries and ricotta look like divine ways to use honey! I can eat buckets of the stuff on toast or crumpets with butter and have a long kept childhood fantasy of keeping bees one day...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Georgia, bee keeping would be amazing, I must admit I am very nervous around bees though :)

      Delete
  11. I'm a little obsessed with honey too! I've recently discovered the most amazing Tasmanian creamed honies. I thought about bee keeping, but like you, I'm a little wary of being stung! :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. Oh yes Jane honey is from heaven...my fatherinlaw had beehives for a time andas a result we had a plentiful supply of fresh honey and it was wonderful. He did get quite a few stings but just brushed it off as part of the game. I was never quite so brave- we do miss the honey and my father inlaw too!!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. How wonderful! So close to the source of the food. I have read about the importance of bees in urban environments too and know there are more people trying to set up city bee farms on rooftops etc - it's all fascinating. Personally I'm happy to be a long way from little things buzzing around that I can't keep a track of visually! (and like you, I don't tire of coffee photos. I actually photograph more coffees than I drink!). Hope you are well.

    ReplyDelete
  14. We love honey at our place and have been enjoying Honey Delight honey from Carmen at our local farmer's markets. Their honey is clear and pure... the active honey is divine! Love it on crumpets. I suggest you follow Carmen on Twitter, she is lovely too.... great post Jane!

    ReplyDelete
  15. wow..what a treat to be given honey fresh from the hives..i am jealous..

    whenever i eat honey i imagine all the trips the bees made to collect nectar and pollen from flowers and blossoms to make it..x

    ReplyDelete
  16. I love honey!

    We have bees!

    This recipe and these photos look so delicious.

    rachel xox

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hi Jane, this cake is my kind of cake. In fact I think I will bake one today! Thanks for your comments over on my blog. It is SO great to discover your blog seems we are like minded when it comes to food and family. A lovely space you have here.
    Nikki x

    ReplyDelete

Hello and welcome. I will try to reply to all comments eventually because I love the conversation! Jane