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Maple Syrup Making - Celebrate Maple Syrup Day

Updated on January 6, 2015

Maple Syrup Celebration


Celebrate Maple Syrup

Maple syrup making is a lengthy process. It takes time, hard work and perseverance. We celebrate the sticky sweet concoction with its own holiday. December 17th is National Maple Syrup Day. It is a wacky holiday that is always celebrated on this date. This little known holiday is not nationally recognized and even maple syrup experts are perplexed by its origin.It is possible that this day is celebrated in reaction to the Maine Maple Producers Association's event called Maine Maple Sunday. Maine Maple Sunday is always celebrated on the fourth Sunday in March. Many maple syrup producers offer free syrup tastings, activities, games and other goodies on this day. It would suffice to say that National Maple Syrup Day is a day that was chosen for all the other states to celebrate the sugary joys of maple syrup. Fortunately, since it is a National Maple Syrup Day, Maine residents are invited to celebrate as well. Maine residents are the envy of other state residents since they have two sticky sweet holidays to enjoy.

Just how does one celebrate on National Maple Syrup Day? There are many ways to celebrate but the easiest way is to enjoy maple syrup on this day by eating it many different ways. One could start out their day by visiting a sugar house that serves pancakes with their home made syrup and eating their fill. Then purchasing some syrup and maple candy or maple sugar would be apropo. Going home and baking some maple cupcakes and including maple in a glaze for a roast would be a nice way to celebrate. Invite friends over to celebrate National Maple Syrup Day and they could help eat the maple flavored goodies that were prepared. Toast the day with a maple wine or maple flavored beer. Don't forget to show your spirit on National Maple Syrup Day and wear something with a maple leaf design like a nice vintage piece of jewelry or a printed maple leaf scarf. Decorate the table with maple leaf napkins and maple foliage. Maple scented candles are great as a centerpiece for your gathering on National Maple Syrup Day. Don't forget favors for your guests. Maple sugar candy comes in fun shapes and is usually packed in small boxes which are great favors to give your guests as they depart the festivities.

Maple Syrup Shack Natick Community Farm


Cooking Down Maple Syrup


How Maple Syrup Is Made

It takes approximately 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrup. The sap is collected and boiled down so that the water evaporates leaving only the syrup. The boiling process is completed in an evaporator at a sugar house. Wood, natural gas or propane are the common fuels used to boil the sap. Natural gas and propane are more efficient but wood is economical so it is often used.Sap is collected from sugar maple trees during the late weeks of February into March depending on the region. There is only a three week window to collect sap. Once buds start to form on the maple trees, the sap can no longer be collected because the flavor of the syrup is off balance.Grades of maple syrup are based on the density and translucency of the syrup. In the United States, only maple syrup containing mostly maple sugars can be labeled as true maple syrup and graded. Maple butter or cream is made by boiling the maple syrup even more intensely thereby reducing it to a cream. Maple candy is made by cooking the syrup to a certain consistency, whipping it and then forming it by placing it into molds. North American Indians were the first people to make maple syrup. It is these same Indians who showed colonists how to harvest and reduce maple sap into syrup and often maple sugar was used in place of salt in recipes.

Use maple syrup to sweeten hot oatmeal, to flavor baked goods and frosting, try a little bit in tea instead of honey, maple bacon chocolate chip cookies are delicious, warm up some maple syrup and pour over vanilla ice cream, top off your french toast, create a maple flavored custard for dessert, and grab some clean fresh snow then top with maple syrup; this is the original snow cone! Maple sugared candies come in great shapes and are a sweet fun treat. Try maple sugar candy as an alternative to a chocolate bar and put a sweet twist in your snack time. Maple sugar granules sweeten tea and coffee easily and are convenient for baking.

Benefits of Pure Maple Syrup

Pure maple syrup does not contain corn syrup. Besides using maple syrup as a sweetner, check out the host of benefits touted about this product:

  1. May help prevent inflammatory diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, and Alzheimer’s, a University of Rhode Island study found.
  2. It boosts the immune system.
  3. It may ease an upset tummy.
  4. Maple syrup is loaded with polyphenols, plant-based compounds that work as antioxidants to help safeguard against cancer.
  5. Use it mixed with some warm milk and oatmeal for a natural facial cleanser for younger looking skin.
  6. It is less likely to cause gas and bloating in cooking vs. other sweeteners.
  7. Because it contains zinc and manganese it is a cold fighter.

© 2014 Corey


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