Spring in Winter & the sap is flowing

We’ve had our temps in the mid to upper 60s these last few days.  It is great being able to get outside without the winter boots and leggings. Yes, I wear adult winter leggings in the winter, it just makes it more comfortable when it’s in the teens (Fahrenheit) and the wind is blowing.

These last 2 days, I’ve been able to get out and work in my yard.  Raking all the leaves that were left behind from the fall.  And let me tell you, there’s always a lot of leaves piled in all the corners of the yard. I will be sore over the next couple of days, but it is well worth it.  It is always a great feeling to step back and enjoy how nice it looks when all cleaned up.

With the day temps reaching above 40 and the night temps still below freezing, the sugar maple trees have started to flow.  It is always nice to hear the drip, drip, drip, of the 1st drops of sap in the spring.

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I wanted to post a video, but my version of WordPress does not support video, but you can go to my facebook page  to check out the video.

We use a camp stove and we have 3 stainless steal 5-gallon pots that we use for boiling down the sap .  It takes 40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup.

So far we have collected 60 gallons of sap, which will produce 1.5 gallons of syrup. I love the way our sap house turns into a steam room and the smell of the sweet maple air.

Now to dream of all the things we use our homemade syrup for… pancakes, waffles, French toast, fried ham steak, candied sweet potatoes and maple cookies.  Just thinking about it, makes my mouth water. Yum!

~ May all your wandering take you to many wonderful places.

Lisa

 

 

It’s Maple Syrup Time

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What a busy last two weeks it’s been.  Maple syrup season has come and gone and what a short season it’s been. The length of season is all dependent on daytime and nighttime temperatures.  The flow begins when temperatures during the day reach 40 degrees or greater, while the nighttime temperatures remain below freezing.

This last week we’ve had temperatures in the mid to high 60s, with nighttime temperatures above freezing. This signals the start of the end and then within a few days the sap stops running.

Did you know that it takes approximately 40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup?  Also, with our method of boil down, it takes approximately 8 hours to boil down each 40 gallons of sap.  This year we got approximately 4 gallons of syrup. That’s 160 gallons of sap, boiled over 32 hours.  That’s a lot of hauling of buckets and many hours of boil down.

Hauling, boiling and getting ready for bottling.

Once the season is over, it’s time to enjoy the fruits of our labor. What’s better than maple syrup on pancakes, waffles or French toast in the morning?  How about making a sweet and salty sauce for ham steak?

Here’s my Maple Glazed Ham Steak recipe:

  • Purchase 1 pre-cooked ham steak
  • Pour 1/4 c of maple syrup into a frying pan, one big enough to hold your ham steak.
  • Cook the ham steak per the instructions on the package – I normally only add a little bit of water, I don’t want to water down the maple syrup too much.
  • Once cooked, remove ham and  keep warm.
  • Increase flame to high and boil liquid until reduced and thickened.
  • Pour glaze over ham and serve.

Do you have any special maple syrup recipes? I would love for you to comment below and share.

~ May all your wandering take you to many wonderful places.

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