Two of the three farms we visited this fall sold honey fresh from the hive. In fact, both farms had several glass cases on display so patrons could watch thousands of busy bees fill hive cells with fresh honey. It was fascinating, and naturally, a great marketing tactic to get us city folk to purchase a few jars of honey on the way out.
Of course, it was only after I got into the car that I realized that I don’t really use honey all that much (occasionally on fresh biscuits and in tea, but not often in main dishes). That all changed two weeks ago when I experimented with the following honey recipes.
Both could not be simpler to make (great if you are trying to get dinner on the table in record time) and are extremely kid-friendly (this, from a mom of a picky eater). You don’t have to have fresh from the hive honey to make the recipes; however, if you are planning to make these dishes with honey you’ve had around for a while you might want to smell it first. Honey is susceptible to physical and chemical changes during storage and tends to darken and lose its flavor or crystallize when it is not packaged properly. When in doubt throw it out and use a new jar of honey.
HONEY BAKED CHICKEN WITH PECANS
2 1/2 to 3 pound chicken, cut in pieces
2 cups crushed cornflakes or breadcrumbs
1 1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons milk
Salt and pepper to taste
1 stick butter, melted
1 cup honey
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 cup pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Season chicken with salt and pepper. Stir together mayonnaise and milk. Roll chicken in mayonnaise and then crumbs. Coat well.
Bake for 45 to 50 minutes.
Mix butter, honey, and soy sauce until smooth. Add pecans to mixture. Spoon over chicken and bake another 15 to 25 minutes.
MINI HONEY HOT DOGS
1 pound mini smoked hot dogs (cocktail weiners)
1/4 cup BBQ sauce
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon ginger
Combine all ingredients, except hotdogs, in saucepan, skillet or crock-pot.
Add hot dogs and continue cooking until heated thoroughly.
Serve hot with a side of honey for dipping.