Peanut butter and honey -- two tasty things that are even better together! We happen to love both of those foods around here. And, as ever, we're excited about learning to produce these for ourselves, to be more self-sustaining for the Give Hope 2 Kids Children's Home.
We've had beehives for a couple years now. While we've enjoyed eating honey in the comb, we hadn't found a good way yet to get the honey out of the comb. One of our volunteers, Becca, is from a family that keeps bees though, so she was able to give us some good pointers. She showed us how to separate the honey from the wax of the comb using a double-boiler.
By heating the comb in the double-boiler, you melt the wax. Then, as it cools, the wax separates from the honey, rises to the top, and hardens. After the wax is hard, you can remove that layer and start spooning the honey into your mouth, or, um, put the honey in a bottle to use later.
We were amazed at how much honey there actually was once it was out of the comb. This has fueled our excitement for beekeeping, and in general, our love of honey. The taste of our tropical honey is incredible!
Peanut butter isn't what you'll normally find in a Honduran pantry, but all of the kids living here have developed a taste for it. Since we now consume a lot of peanut butter, we decided to buy peanuts in bulk and try making our own.
Jason (with Josiah's help) has been our main peanut butter chef. He's working on finding the right blending process and adding the right amount of salt, honey, and oil for flavor and texture (here's a good recipe). After roasting the peanuts, it works best for us to break them up in the food processor and then blend them for several minutes in our ninja blender to get a smoother consistency. Making peanut butter is actually a much faster and easier process than what we expected. We've been handing out samples to anyone willing to taste it and everyone likes it. I (Sarah) think it's the best tasting peanut butter I've had.
For the future of peanut butter, we may grow our own peanuts and see if that's cost effective. We're also dabbling in making flavored peanut butter: cinnamon so far, chocolate to come.