National Honey Month
September is National Honey Month! And at Valley Natural Foods, we celebrate this historic, versatile and healthy ingredient by offering fresh, raw honey from a variety of local sources!
Humans have been collecting and consuming honey for over 8000 years, and has been an important ingredient throughout history, from the days of the ancient Egyptians to the Roman Empire, up through the time of kings and queens of England and into the modern day.
Honey’s long history is due in part to many of the health benefits that it provides. It can be applied externally to treat wounds and sores, taken internally to ease coughing and throat irritation, and some recent research even indicated that honey can help prevent cancer and heart disease. If you are interested in the health benefits of honey, see our Wellness Staff who can guide you towards products like raw honey or Manuka honey.
Honey’s main use, of course, is as a natural sweetener that can be used instead of sugar in a variety of ways, beyond simply sweetening your tea. Honey makes a great ingredient to include in glazes for chicken or duck. It always belongs on a charcuterie platter with cheeses and crostini. Honey can be used in a variety of salad dressings and vinaigrettes. Make home-made honey mustard for the classic dipping sauce for meats or a tasty topping for greens.
And honey makes up half of the delicious one-two punch that is known as “Honey Butter.” I’ve yet to find a baked good that honey butter doesn’t take from good to amazing –bagels, banana bread, scones, cornbread and every slice of bread imaginable. Also, try it on your next stack of pancakes – and thank us later. In fact, our Deli department often makes honey butter in convenient tubs if you want to give it a try!
But the best thing about honey is the variety. White crystalline sugar does its job, but other than sweetness, it doesn’t bring much more to the party. Honey, however, comes in dozens of different varieties that vary from the subtle floral notes and golden color of wildflower honey to the strong, molasses-like pungency and dark hue of buckwheat honey, with every shade and flavor in between.
Valley Natural Foods offers honey and other products fresh from the hive (such as beeswax) from great local vendors like Ames Honey in Delano, MN; Homestead Apiaries in Dennison, MN; and Bare Honey in St. Paul – you can’t get any closer to the hive without getting stung! We offer honey in packaged jars of all sizes as well as bulk, so you can get just as much as you need.
So BEE sure to come in to Valley Natural Foods all September long and get some tasty, local honey that’s full of flavor and useful in the kitchen and the medicine cabinet.