Live from Quebec: Experiencing the Annual Sugaring Off

8 years ago

"We can smell the maple syrup as soon as we step out of the car. I can see smoke rising up out of the trees and the sun warms my face. ... We've all come for one thing: sugaring off. During these warm days and cool nights, the sap is running in Lynn and Marc's 25 acre 'sugar bush'. The maple trees are tapped, and the collecting of the precious sap has begun." ~ Excerpt from Under the High Chair

So begins the first of two posts from the Quebec food blog "Under the High Chair" -- writing that transports us to a stand of maple trees just as the sap begins to flow.

Photo by Under the High Chair
Photo by Under the High Chair

"The ancestral process is surprisingly elementary. Choose the side of the trunk that faces the sun; drill a hole (at a slight upwards angle so the sap can flow down); place a tap firmly in the hole; hang a bucket on the hook below the tap; cover the bucket with a lid. Then you wait. On a warm day like today, the sap is running fast and a bucket can fill within hours." ~ excerpt from the first post, Sugaring Off - Part I

Photo by Under the High Chair
Photo by Under the High Chair

"He has reduced the syrup over a steady heat until it has reached the soft ball stage and now pours it on the snow in long strips. The taffy hardens--but not too much--and then is rolled onto a paddle; this lollipop of pure delicacy is handed to the closest awaiting hand. ... Like mother, like son, it hasn't taken Noah very long to discover this snow buffet. I watch with enjoyment as he cautiously takes a first taste and then observe in horror as he neatly devourers the rest of the tire on his stick in one massive sticky bite." ~ Sugaring Off - Part II

Thank you, Aimée, for the trip into the woods!

And now onto the recipes for maple syrup.

Kath Eats ~ Maple Pecan Granola
101 Cookbooks ~ Maple Syrup Scones

Whisk ~ Sweet Potato Soup with Maple Syrup &
Karina's Kitchen ~ Asparagus with Maple Tahini Dressing

Kalyn's Kitchen ~ Grilled Salmon with Maple Syrup Glaze
Fresh Approach Cooking ~ Chicken with Rosemary & Maple Syrup

The Perfect Pantry ~ Poached Pears
One Whole Clove ~ Maple Syrup Tea Loaf

And you?
And you, what's your favorite way to use maple syrup? Leave a recipe or a link to a recipe in the comments!

BlogHer food editor Alanna Kellogg collects maple syrup recipes and last week made maple syrup ice cream.

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