Memories and Maple Syrup
January 8, 2017 4:16pm CST
When my youngest was around 8 years old we moved into a home with two big maple trees in the back yard. A good friend when he noticed them suggested we tap them and make some syrup just for fun. My son had already asked if we could do that. My friend had the taps and the covered buckets so we put two buckets on the two trees.It was spring and the sap was running. My husband the chef has a huge pot for making big batches of soups and other things, we brought up into the kitchen. He was out of town for a couple of weeks.... So we decided to make a mess.. My son checked the sap buckets and emptied them into this huge pot and when it was full and it was the weekend we started ... We boiled that sap and like magic it started getting thicker. It took three days... It took a long time... When the syrup was finally thick enough we put it in a few little jars.That pot that probably held 8 gallons of sap and gave us about a half quart of syrup.... It was delicious and as I cleaned the kitchen something dropped on my head. I looked up and the whole ceiling was dripping with syrup steam. It took me many hours to wash the ceiling first and then everything else in the kitchen because everything was sticky. I had noticed the steam coming off the syrup as it cooked. If you go to a sugar shack where they make syrup in a building, you will see they don't allow the steam to be in a building, it is sent up out of the roof. In the olden days it was boiled over a fire outside (in a huge kettle) so the steam just disappears. Thankfully just the kitchen was a mess, and I would never do it again but my son and I had a great time doing it and enjoyed the syrup on our pancakes. From that day on every spring we would go to a sugar shack and watch the process, no more sticky ceilings for me – ever! The photo is mine taken at a maple syrup place here in Ontario.
22 people like this
We lived in what is nicknamed The Maple City for the first few years of our marriage, and we have always had a maple tree on our property, until we moved out here, but I have never partook in the spring maple syrup tapping, we haven't even been out to a maple bush to see someone else do it.
Its fascinating to watch and see what goes on. My parents took us kids to a sugar bush every spring and we came home with maple syrup and candy. I did the same when we moved back north for my kids. The last one I went to here in this area had natives there making syrup the way they did years ago, they hollow out a cut tree, then pour the syrup into carved tree and dropped hot rocks in the sap and the steams rises and eventually they have syrup. I asked how they cleaned their syrup when it was done because the sap in the cut out tree was filthy with the ashes from the rocks used....I don't remember their answer.. I should look it up and see if its mentioned on line...
How to make maple syrup the Ojibwa way
I don't like the fake stuff because of the chemicals they add to the mix to "make it better" So i spend the 25 dollars for a big enough bottle to last for a year...There are just two of us so it actually lasts usually longer than a year but we go to the local sugar shack every spring and buy a bottle for us and a bottle for the neighbor who blows the snow off of our driveway all winter...
• Gainesville, Florida
How did the syrup taste? I can imagine that it was probably delicious! Here in Florida, we don't have a lot of maples, so it would be hard to make homemade maple syrup. But we do make cane syrup from sugar cane, although in my opinion it is nowhere near as good as maple syrup. But still, it's pretty good. Just a different taste, that's all.
That is interesting, the syrup tasted lovely just like the ones I buy every spring now..I have never tasted sugar cane. When and if we get to meet in Florida you can show us. I think Belle is in Florida now, I'm still in limbo waiting for my surgeon to set a date. I'm beginning to think nothing is going to happen this spring so I may put it off to late summer so we can get out of the cold country and head south.
I've never heard of a poison maple. I just looked it up and I see the red maple is poison to horses. I read farther and even the leaves of the sugar maple can make a horse sick. I learn something every day. so thanks for that...
• United States
we have three huge maple trees here.A couple of years a friend of mine tap a spout and got plenty of syrup. They had their own sugar shack.Then a tree specialist told me to stop it as it may harm your tree.We notices that one of the tree was going down him.But still healthy and we did stop.