About the Books
A collection of delicious honey recipes from the Honeybee Sisters book series, featuring quotes and recipes from Sweet as Honey, A Bee in her Bonnet, and Like a Bee to Honey–Amish romances by Jennifer Beckstrand.
Lily, Poppy, and Rose Christner, known as the Honeybee Sisters in their Amish community, are smart, inseparable, and all grown up. Orphaned when they were very young, the girls were raised by their eccentric Aunt Bitsy, who doesn’t behave like a proper Amish spinster. The Honeybee Sisters have blossomed into rare beauties, and the boys in the community have begun to take notice. But Aunt Bitsy is determined to scare off all comers with her brusque manner and her handy shotgun. None but the most worthy will make it past Bitsy’s defenses. It’s going to be a rowdy and romantic summer–harvesting honey from their many beehives and fighting off the boys right and left.
Note from Aunt Bitsy: When my girls told me they wanted to write a cookbook, I wasn’t too keen on the idea. Food attracts boys like honey attracts bees. I warned them that if they didn’t want the boys hanging around the house, they shouldn’t make the cakes and pies and cookies that are sure to bring them running. My nieces didn’t seem to be alarmed about the prospect of boys all over the place, so I suppose they’ll have to learn the hard way.
My problem is that smart, feisty, pretty girls attract boys even better than honey does. So even if my girls stopped cooking altogether, I have a sneaking suspicion that the boys would still find excuses to come over.
Some of the recipes in this book, like Honey Glazed Pretzels and Whole Wheat Bread, are very traditional Amish dishes. Others, like Salmon Tacos and Coconut Lime Chicken, are less traditional but still wunderbarr. I lived as an Englischer for twenty years before coming back to the Amish to raise my three nieces, and as a dental hygienist, I collected a lot of recipes.
Here’s my final warning: Boys are like stray cats. If you feed them, they’ll keep coming back. Buy this cookbook at your own risk.
About the Author
Jennifer Beckstrand is the bestselling Amish romance author of The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill series for Kensington Books. Huckleberry Summer was nominated for the RT Book Reviews Reviewer’s Choice Award and the 2015 RITA® Award, and Huckleberry Hill won the 2014 LIME Award for Inspirational fiction. Both Huckleberry Hill and Huckleberry Christmas appeared in Examiner.com list of top ten inspirational books for 2014.
Jennifer has always been drawn to the strong faith and the enduring family ties of the Plain people and loves writing about the antics of Anna and Felty Helmuth. Jennifer has a degree in mathematics and a background in editing. She and her husband have been married for thirty years, and she has four daughters, two sons, and four adorable grandchildren, whom she spoils rotten.
Guest Post from Jennifer Beckstrand
Nothing brings family and friends together like a home-cooked meal. When I think of Amish food and cooking, I think of the way my mother used to cook and the way her mother cooked before her.
Both my parents grew up on farms, and hard work was a way of life. So were homemade meals and food that stuck to your ribs and gave you fuel for a hard day’s work in the fields. Cooking was more of an art than a burden, a way to sustain life, but also a labor of love for your family, day in and day out.
I joke with my husband that I have forgotten how to cook now that we’re empty nesters and I’d rather eat cold cereal than fire up the stove, but creating a nutritious meal for my family or baking a delicious dessert still brings me satisfaction and is a gift of the heart to my loved ones.
The Honeybee Sisters Cookbook began to take shape when I came up with the idea for a series about three sisters who keep bees and make delicious honey treats. In the Honeybee Sisters Cookbook, you’ll find some traditional Amish favorites as well as some not-so-Amish dishes—recipes that Aendi Bitsy collected from her years living with the Englisch. The pages are filled with mouth-watering photos, and I’ve included quotes from the Honeybee Sisters books. I hope you enjoy trying out the recipes as much as we enjoyed creating them for you.
My father in-law, who was also raised on a farm, passed away very recently. His mother made him a bowl of oatmeal every morning, which he hated, and it would be waiting for him after school if he didn’t eat it at breakfast. In honor of him, I would like to share a rhubarb recipe. Rhubarb was one of his favorite treats.
This recipe is authentically Amish from my friend Priscilla Stoltzfus in Pennsylvania.
Rhubarb Upside-down Cake
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
2 cups rhubarb, diced
Pour rhubarb mixture into an 8×8 pan.
¼ cup shortening
1 cup sugar
2 cups flour
2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
Pour the flour mixture over rhubarb mixture and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Turn upside-down on a plate to serve. Serve warm, if you wish.
My Thoughts I really enjoyed all the quotes from the books in the Honeybee Sisters series. (I actually looked through the cookbook before reading the series, and still enjoyed the quotes) As would be expected from a cookbook from Aendi Bitsy, all the recipes include honey. There are many types of recipes (main dishes, salads, breads, & treats) I decided to try the "Bee's Knees Corn Dogs". One thing I changed was that the recipe said to cut the hotdogs in half and stick a lollipop stick into them. I cut my hotdogs into 3rds and left off the stick. We used the leftover batter to make donut holes.
Reactions: Everyone liked the corndogs and said they tasted "like normal". The donut holes were an even bigger hit.
There are many recipes that look like they would be good and I think we'll be trying some more out in the future.
September 20: Smiling Book Reviews
September 20: Book Babble
September 21: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner
September 22: Reading Is My SuperPower
September 23: Books,Dreams,Life
September 24: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS
September 25: Bibliophile Reviews
September 26: Simple Harvest Reads
September 27: A Baker’s Perspective
September 28: Blogging With Carol
September 29: Bukwurmzzz
September 29: Donna’s BookShelf
September 30: Through the Open Window
September 30: cherylbbookblog
October 1: Eat, Read, Teach, Blog
October 2: Blossoms and Blessings
October 3: Quiet Quilter
October 3: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations
To celebrate her tour, Jennifer is giving away one set of The Honeybee Sisters Series! Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a2ba
"The Honeybee Sisters Cookbook" is available in hardcover:
I received a free digital copy of this book for me to give an honest review during the Celebrate Lit blog tour. All thoughts and opinions are my own and no other compensation was received.