Cucumbers and honey


We harvested, extracted, and bottled honey today. I have tons of video of the process, but it will be a while before I get it all edited and spliced together into something resembling a coherent Podcast. We harvested 10 frames. The photo above shows the first six frames’ worth of honey. The new extractor worked very well. Every surface in our house seems to be coated with honey at the moment, but it’s worth it.

I’ve spent a lot of time working in the kitchen lately, processing things I’ve harvested from the garden. Last night, I made a batch of pickles:

This pickle recipe is a slight variation on one my mom’s friend Dana gave her. I’ll post it later.

All the cucumbers that had gotten too big and ripe to use for pickles wound up being turned into relish. I don’t normally eat much relish, but I think this stuff is straight-up awesome. I made the recipe up as I went along, based on three or four recipes I’d seen online and a few of my own ideas about what I’d like on a hot dog.

Here’s the recipe:


Emily’s Pickle Relish

About six large or 10 small pickling cucumbers, quartered, with seeds removed
Two large red onions, peeled and quartered
Three bell peppers, cored and quartered
Five ribs of celery, washed and trimmed
1 c. cider vinegar
2 c. water
1/3 c. pickling salt
2 c. sugar
1 tbsp. mustard seed
1 tbsp. dried red pepper flakes
2 tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. paprika
1 tbsp. celery seed
1 tsp. cloves, crushed
1 head garlic, peeled and pressed

Place vegetables in food processor and chop finely. Place chopped vegetables in colander and let drain for an hour or so.


Place remaining ingredients in a deep saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly to keep sugar from burning. Stir and boil liquid until its volume decreases by about a third. Remove from heat. (You could probably shorten the cooking time here by simply using less water to start with.)


Place drained vegetables in a large bowl. Stir syrup into vegetables. Pack in small jars and process for 15 minutes in a boiling-water bath. Makes about six pints.

After all our hard work the past couple of days, we rewarded ourselves tonight with a trip to the Performing Arts Center downtown to see The Phantom of the Opera. I’d already seen Phantom two or three times in St. Louis, but Ron had never seen it. The performers were all really good, and even Ron — who normally hates Andrew Lloyd Webber — enjoyed it. 

Hope your day was as good as mine.