Local honey oozing with floral flavors

Juan Alvarado proudly displays his local honey – and bees – at the Concord farmers market.

Local honey oozing with floral flavors

Pure local honey is perfect on a fresh-baked biscuit, in hot tea or honey mustard dressing.

This is all made possible by honey bees, insects that transforms flower nectar into the sweet golden liquid we love.
Alvarado Apiary, formerly Diablo Creek Apiary, brings a variety of flavored honey to the Tuesday and Thursday Concord farmers markets. The honey features regional varieties of flowers and is made by bees that visit open forage throughout the Mt. Diablo range – from Oakland to Brentwood. The market display also includes an unassuming brown frame box filled with humming bees making honeycomb.

Some beekeepers extract honey by heating it to allow for easier flow, but Alvarado uses the cold process of honey extraction to keep the health benefits intact. And that keep customers returning for more.

A lot of work goes into keeping bees healthy, says Juan Alvarado. “We take no shortcuts and consider our work a labor of love. We’re absolutely passionate about bees and got our first start after rescuing a beehive that washed down the flood waters of the Diablo Creek.”

Local honey oozing with floral flavors
Juan Alvarado proudly displays his local honey – and bees – at the Concord farmers market.

Farmers markets give them a chance to talk with customers and provide information about their bees, along with tips or suggestions. Alvarado Apiary’s philosophy is simple: Let the bees be bees.

So sweeten your day with pure local honey. You can be assured that the honey you purchase at the local farmers market is pure, with no additives.

Browned Buttered Almonds
16 oz. raw almonds, blanched
4 T. pastured butter
About 4 T. local honey, to taste
Kosher salt, to taste
Lavender flowers (optional)

To blanch almonds, place in a bowl and barely cover with boiling water. Let the almonds sit one minute – no longer, or they’ll lose their crispness.

Drain water and rinse almonds under cold water; drain again. Pat the almonds dry with a soft cloth or paper towel.

To slip the skins off the almonds, take one nut at a time and pinch one end to allow the skin to loosen. The nut will basically pop out of its skin.

Warm butter in sauté pan until it melts and starts to bubble. Add blanched almonds and cook until the butter and the almonds are slightly browned. Add honey and salt to taste.

Remove the almonds from the pan and cool. Serve garnished with lavender flowers.

Source: Cooking the Market, PCFMA.

Visit www.pcfma.org/eat/recipes for more recipes.