Honey Panna Cotta √

Serves 8.

Note: Here’s the winner of the First Annual Dandelion Honey Pastry Chef Contest, hosted by Beez Kneez, to raise money and awareness for the Healthy Bees Healthy Lives pollinator initiative. Pastry chef Toni Luschen of Lucia’s restaurant in Minneapolis shared the original recipe, which has been adapted for smaller quantities. The light, creamy panna cotta is nicely balanced by the crunchy Florentines (below), and the dandelion honey’s flavor shines through in both. Feel free to use other honey varieties.

2 3/4 tsp. unflavored gelatin (two 1/4 oz. envelopes)

• 2 tbsp. cold water

• 2 c. heavy cream

• 1 c. whole milk

1/2 c. honey (preferably dandelion)

• Pinch salt

Directions

Lightly oil 8 ramekins. In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the 2 tablespoons cold water and let stand for about 1 minute to soften.

Combine the cream, milk and honey in a heavy saucepan, and bring just to a boil over moderate heat, stirring until the honey is dissolved. Remove from the heat and stir 1 cup of the warm cream mixture into the gelatin, then stir the cream and gelatin mixture back into the cream.

Divide the cream mixture among the ramekins and let cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until the panna cotta is set, about 4 hours or overnight.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 260 Fat 19 g

Sodium 55 mg Saturated fat 12 g

Carbohydrates 21 g Calcium 78 mg

Protein 4 g Cholesterol 69 mg

Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: ½ milk, 1 other carb, 4 fat.

Roast Chicken with Cumin, Honey and Orange √

Serves 4 to 6.

Note: This makes an easy weeknight dinner served with rice or barley. From Beth Dooley.

• 2 tbsp. unsalted butter

3 to 4 lb. chicken parts, legs cut in two, trimmed of excess fat, then rinsed and patted dry with paper towels

• 2 tbsp. fresh orange juice

• 2 tbsp. honey

• 1 tsp. minced garlic

• 2 tsp. ground cumin

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Put the butter into a roasting pan and melt it in the oven for about 1 minute.

Add the chicken, skin side up, and place in the hot oven.

In a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice, honey, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper. After the chicken has cooked about 15 minutes, baste with the orange mixture, turn the chicken over and baste; roast another 10 minutes.

Turn the chicken again and baste. Continue roasting and basting with the remaining sauce, until the chicken is done, about 40 to 50 minutes, or until the juices run clear when cut with a knife. Remove the chicken and serve with the pan juices spooned overall.

Nutrition information per each of 6 servings:

Calories 305 Fat 15 g

Sodium 85 mg Saturated fat 6 g

Carbohydrates 7 g Calcium 35 mg

Protein 34 g Cholesterol 110 mg

Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: ½ other carb, 5 lean meat.

Coffee Rum Barbecue Sauce √

Makes about 1 1/4 cup.

Note: This robust sauce is wonderful on steak, pork, chicken, even salmon. Brush on during the last 10 minutes of cooking to make a nice glaze. From Beth Dooley.

• 1 c. strongly brewed coffee

• 1/2 c. dark rum

• 1/2 c. honey

• 3 tbsp. soy sauce

• 3 tbsp. cider vinegar

2 shots hot sauce or more to taste

Directions

In a small saucepan, combine coffee, rum, honey, soy sauce, vinegar and hot sauce. Over medium heat, bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally until reduced to about half.

Nutrition information per 2 tablespoons:

Calories 64 Fat 0 g

Sodium 270 mg Saturated fat 0 g

Carbohydrates 14 g Calcium 3 mg

Protein 0 g Cholesterol 0 mg

Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 other carb.

Honey Almond Florentine Cookies √

Makes about 24 pieces.

Note: Once the cookies are cooled, break into 4-inch pieces. They’re delicious when used to scoop up the panna cotta, as you would with a spoon. From pastry chef Toni Luschen of Lucia’s restaurant in Minneapolis.

10 tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into chunks

• 1 c. sugar

• 1/4 c. heavy cream

• 1/4 c. honey

• 2 1/2 c. slivered almonds

• 1/3 c. rolled oats (not instant)

• Pinch salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine butter, sugar, cream and honey in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Allow butter to melt and sugar and honey to dissolve, stirring occasionally, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and stir in the almonds and oats until thoroughly combined and simmer for about 1 minute.

Pour the batter on the paper-lined baking sheet and spread out evenly with a spatula. Bake until golden, about 7 to 9 minutes. Remove from the oven to cool and harden. Break into 4- to 6-inch pieces to serve.

Nutrition information per each:

Calories 170 Fat 12 g

Sodium 10 mg Saturated fat 4 g

Carbohydrates 14 g Calcium 34 mg

Protein 3 g Cholesterol 15 mg

Dietary fiber 1 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 other carb, 1 ½ fat.

Ginger, Lime and Honey Coleslaw √

Serves 4 to 6.

Note: The dressing for this slaw is wonderful on dark salad greens and steamed beets, too. From Beth Dooley.

• 6 tbsp. fresh lime juice

• 3 tbsp. honey

• 1 tsp. soy sauce, or to taste

1 tbsp. freshly grated ginger, or more to taste

• 2 tbsp. toasted sesame oil

• 2 tbsp. light sesame oil

• 2 c. shredded green cabbage

• 2 c. shredded red cabbage

• 2 carrots, shredded

• 1 tart, firm apple, thinly sliced

1/2 c. finely chopped green onion

• 1/2 c. chopped cilantro

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

To make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, honey, soy sauce and ginger. Whisk in the two oils in a slow, steady stream.

To make the slaw: In a large bowl, combine cabbage, carrots, apple, onion and cilantro; toss. Add just enough of the dressing to lightly coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Allow to stand about 30 minutes before serving, or cover and refrigerate overnight.

Nutrition information per each of 6 servings:

Calories 160 Fat 9 g

Sodium 78 mg Saturated fat 1 g

Carbohydrates 20 g Calcium 38 mg

Protein 1 g Cholesterol 0 mg

Dietary fiber 3 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, ½ fruit, ½ other carb, 2 fat.

Honey-Kissed Brussels Sprouts √

Serves 4 to 6.

Note: This is a wonderful way to prepare Brussels sprouts, especially if they are not in season and their flavors need a boost. From Beth Dooley.

• 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

• 2 tbsp. honey

• 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 lb. Brussels sprouts, cleaned and cut in half lengthwise

Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, honey and oil.

Place the Brussels sprouts into a large bowl and toss with the honey mixture. Spread the sprouts out on a baking sheet in one layer so that they are not touching. Sprinkle lightly with the salt and pepper.

Roast for 25 to 30 minutes until the edges are dark golden, turning them midway through. Remove and serve hot or at room temperature.

Nutrition information per each of 6 servings:

Calories 92 Fat 5 g

Sodium 17 mg Saturated fat 1 g

Carbohydrates 12 g Calcium 28 mg

Protein 2 g Cholesterol 0 mg

Dietary fiber 2 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, ½ other carb, 1 fat.

Cardamom Honey Yogurt √

Makes 1 cup.

Note: This is fabulous spooned over fresh berries or orange sections. Mound it onto lemon pound cake or serve it in a parfait glass layered with crushed ginger snaps.

1 c. whole milk Greek style yogurt

• 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom

• 2 tsp. honey, or more to taste

Directions

In a small bowl, mix together the yogurt, cardamom and honey. Cover and refrigerate 20 minutes before serving or overnight.

Nutrition information per 2 tablespoons:

Calories 42 Fat 3 g

Sodium 19 mg Saturated fat 2 g

Carbohydrates 3 g Calcium 41 mg

Protein 1 g Cholesterol 10 mg

Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: ½ fat.