Honey Cranberry Mold

In the US, it’s time to start planning for Thanksgiving dinner. Cranberry sauce is a big part of the celebration.

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Once you try this recipe, you will never again be satisfied with this...

For this dish, you will need a 1 1/2- to 2-quart nonreactive mold. The jelly can be made up to two days ahead.

  • Prep Time 25 minutes
  • Total Time 8 hours 40 minutes
  • Yield  Serves 8

Ingredients

  • Vegetable oil, for mold
  • 48 ounces fresh or thawed frozen cranberries
  • 1 1/2 cups honey
  • 3 1/2 cups water, divided, plus more if needed
  • 1 3/4 cups honey
  • 2 tablespoons unflavored powdered gelatin

Directions

  1. Lightly oil mold. Bring cranberries, 1 1/2 cups honey, and 3 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan, then reduce heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until cranberries burst and are completely softened, about 10 minutes. Pour through a fine sieve set over a bowl, pressing very firmly on solids to release as much juice as possible (you should have 4 cups; if not, add water to make 4 cups). Skim any foam from surface. Stir in remaining 1 3/4 cups honey.
  2. Transfer 1 cup cranberry liquid to a clean saucepan, and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup water in a small bowl, and let soften 1 minute. Stir gelatin mixture into hot liquid until gelatin dissolves completely. Pour cranberry-gelatin mixture into cranberry-honey mixture, and stir to combine. Place bowl in a larger bowl of ice water. Let cool, stirring occasionally, until cool to the touch and beginning to thicken, about 15 minutes. Pour mixture into mold, and refrigerate until set, at least 8 hours and up to 2 days.
  3. To unmold, dip top of mold into a bowl of hot water 30 seconds, then run a thin-bladed knife around edge to loosen. Place a serving platter on bottom of mold, and quickly invert. Tap to release, and remove mold. (If jelly doesn’t release easily, return to hot water for a few seconds.)

Does It Ever Get Too Hot For Bees?

Today we are under an Excessive Heat Warning in Southern Ohio. Temperatures are expected to reach 100° Farenheit.

Which made me wonder…  Does it ever get too hot for bees?

The answer is “yes.”

Bees are very sensitive little critters. They are highly sensitive to temperatures, just as they are to odors, colors, noises and movement.

They particularly don’t like heat. They keep the hive temperature around 95° F, and they become stressed by temperatures over 98°.

In hot weather, bees collect water to cool the hive, and fan their wings at the entrance to reduce the inside temperature.

If it gets too hot within the hive, they will crowd outside the hive on the landing board during the day and even in the evening. This is called ‘bearding.”

Bearding

If the bees are unable to stay cool, they will expire. Not good.

So what can we do?

First, we should make sure the hive is properly located.  If you live in an area where it gets very hot in the summer, you should avoid placing the hive where it will be in full sun all day.  Sun is generally good for the health of the hive, but too much sun can be deadly.

Second, make sure there is an ample supply of water nearby.  Bees need water to cool the hive, and they need it relatively close by.  I have birdbaths near my hives and have been running the water sprinkler for a bit each day during this extreme hot spell.

So far my bees have been looking okay, but I won’t feel comfortable until the temperatures get down to the 80’s again!