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Homemade maple syrup!

Mar 20, 2011

Read how courtesy of a friend with trees 12 gallons of sap transformed into a bottle of liquid sunshine on my stove.


What a great family event. What is the other sap for?
The birch syrup (more precious, since it's an 80:1 reduction ratio) is for parsnip ice cream. I'll be writing about that soon.
Is this syrup from birch trees? If it is, I can't wait for your post.
Your hands-on creativity with some of the the foundation blocks & keystones of cuisine make you stand out pretty dramatically, Peter! Is early Spring the traditional maple-syrup-making time? Autumn? But it stands to reason that the sap is rising. What a great way to capture Equinox energy - a rite of Spring. In the valley where I live we have one Sugar Maple & hundreds of Box Elders, which old-timers tell me can also be tapped. Please write & show us more about your tapping techniques! And I second Joel's question. Birch sap stirs a distant memory of Scandanavian lore ...
Early pre-spring is the time, Warm days and cold nights make the sap run. Even your one tree might surprise you with how much you can get out, though the season may be over depending on where you live. If you check back at my blog you should see what happens to the sap in the near future, complete with references to contemporary Scandinavian lore. Thanks for your comment.
Our timing may be perfect - blue sky, sunshine, 25" of new snow, 6500' elevation. The one big Sugar Maple is a possibility - it lives at a designerly house & landscape in the old town where two generations of arborists nurtured some unusual-for-here specimen trees. The present owner has only improved the place, a rarity. He offered me the Walnut crop! So we could talk about tapping ...
There was a lot of information on the old site about Maple Syrup production. I think it has to be reduced in volume by 30:1. Glenn
Hi Glenn - I envision all the invaluable, initial "old" content that built KGI extricated, curated & re-installed appropriately by category in the "new" update to the ongoing KGI website. As my great writing professor used to advise ... not verbatim: Never throw anything away. The muse never strikes twice in the same way. I am in the midst of a compelling endeavor - so I haven't made time to research Sugar Maple tapping online. Yes all the information is "out there" but the ignorance-factor when trying to connect the dots in a doable plan that deserves the mortal time & presumably drilling into a tree is sometimes too time-consuming a threshold. Besides, I know the Sugar Maple tree will be there next spring, whereas this matter has historic consequences. :-) But what do I really know? :-)
Get a few taps and buckets with handles from the hardware store. Drill holes for the taps and put them in. Hang the buckets (lids to keep dirt and rain out are nice; I used foil). Collect the sap into larger 5 gallon buckets and boil it down in your biggest pot. 40:1 is the ratio; I got a large quart from 12 gallons. And my post about the birch syrup is up on my blog. Cheers, Peter

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