We had an unexpected honey harvest today. While adding new supers to the hives, I noticed that one of the honey supers had 10 frames rather than the 9 we usually use. It wasn’t a big deal, but it was full of honey and wasn’t serving a purpose in the hive, so I went ahead and pulled it.
We’ve always taken our frames to a local guy for extraction because he has all the expensive equipment, but since this was just one frame I decided to try straining it myself. It’s pretty straightforward- your aim is to get the chunks of comb out because they have a waxy (surprise) texture that isn’t appealing to most people. I don’t mind it because I’m guilty of snacking straight from the hive, but it can’t hurt to strain it out anyway.
Being completely unprepared meant that I had to get a bit creative. I scraped the honey and comb off onto a giant cookie sheet and then put it into a small-holed pasta strainer. This would remove the larger pieces of comb and make the next step easier. This is where I got creative- I repurposed the coffee filter since I didn’t have any cheesecloth. It works just fine as long as you don’t let it seal, which it is highly inclined to do.
Then, I dug in! I’ve already eaten enough to give myself a bit of a stomach ache, but it’s sooooooo good. This is the first honey harvest we’ve had in two years since we lost all but 2 of our hives. Now I can’t wait to really get down to business. We’ll probably do our first big harvest in a few weeks. I can’t wait!