Homesteader’s Honey

So the story goes…. honey was a difficult commodity to come by in the Alaskan homesteader days. Out of necessity they got creative and cooked up what would become an Alaskan staple to slather on those cast iron biscuits on a cold morning. During summer months fireweed and clover grow in abundance and sugar was available at the local frontier supply stores. If you put bee honey and fireweed honey side by side and offered it to guests they’d never know the difference. Give it a taste for yourself. 

My daughter, Abbie, and I walked up the road to the Hall homestead where her sister-in-love, Nicole,  has fields of clover and fireweed blossoms.  We gathered: 

50 red clover blossoms

10 white clover blossoms 

30 fireweed blossoms 

While bringing 3 cups of water to a boil I picked all the leaves off and rinsed the blossoms with cold water in a colander. 

In a large pot combine 5 lbs of sugar, 3/4 tsp alum and the blossoms. When the water is boiling pour it on top of your sugar and blossoms stirring until the sugar is syrupy. Let the mixture steep for 10 minutes. Bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes stirring occasionally. 

Using a cheesecloth I poured the hot honey into a bowl straining out the blossoms. And immediately ladled the honey into jars and put them in a hot water bath to seal. 

Abbie is perfecting her biscuit recipe and I’m happy to contribute honey for breakfast. I can’t wait to break in to a jar. Looking for excuses tonight but I’m stuffed from our Alaskan Halibut tacos. I’ll save that for the next blog though! (My daughter caught the Halibut!)

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