“Blood is thicker than water, but maple syrup is thicker than blood. So technically pancakes are more important than family”
A couple of weekends ago, I was the absolute LUCKIEST girl in the world, & got to spend my first of two birthday weekends making maple syrup up at the cottage! The sun was shining, the Caesars flowing and the sap was a bubblin’ – it honestly couldn’t have been more quintessentially Canadian if I had tried and it was just perfect with a capital “P”! And I finally got to reap the rewards of all of my hard, maple syrup making labour the other day when I made my very own maple syrup candy – of which I’m sharing with all of you today! Full disclosure: when I say “hard labour”, I actually mean that I stirred the sap twice, and then promptly returned to my ceasar and observed the rest of said maple syrup making session!
The Maple Makin’ Process!
Now before we delve into all of that sugary goodness, I wanted to first share the amount of WERK that’s put into making that ever so infamous bottle of liquid gold. Because it’s a LOT! Like… a lot, a lot!
My Northern neighbours live full time at the cottage so to say that they’re an expert in the arena of maple syrup would be somewhat of an understatement! I was therefore over the moon thrilled when they invited my family & I over to help them out with the whole process… and my god, is it ever a process!
First things first… the maple trees have to be tapped! Our neighbors literally tap HUNDREDS of maple trees in order to get the most sap possible – generally it takes about 40 parts of maple sap to get just ONE part of maple syrup…
The sap then has to be boiled down! There is quite a bit of back and forth here between filtering & boiling – honestly I’m not QUITE sure the exact process at this partilcar point – I was too “busy” tending to my Ceasar! #priorities BUT I do know that it has to be boiled for hours upon hours upon hours!
Next comes the filtering and bottling stage! Would you just look at that beautiful amber colour! PERFECTION!
All in all, the entire maple syrup process takes anywhere from a few days to WEEKS – so the next time you enjoy your stack of flap jacks… be sure to appreciate just how much work goes into making that gorgeous bottle of amazingness!
Hard Maple Syrup Candy
Okay SO… now that we’re all on the same page in regards to how it all goes down during sap season – here’s my very first attempt at hard maple syrup candy! Honestly – it was only semi successful! It tasted amazing, but the shapes of the actual candy… well… let’s just say it wasn’t so successful!
Here’s What You’ll Need
- 1-2 Cups of Maple Syrup
- Candy Molds – Hot Tip: I made the ULTIMATE mistake of buying plastic, this resulted in deformed shapes (they were supposed to be Maple Leafs & ended up being blobs!) – honestly, I was in a rush & needed somehting quick – this was all that was available! Invest in proper, reusable candy molds!!! *** This is also a much better alternative health wise!!!! Plastics = no bueno! Rookie mistake!
- Candy Thermometer – Hot Tip: Because of my “rushed situation”, I also did NOT have a candy thermometer! However, I found this utteraly amazing ice bath trick which you can find here!
- Heat maple syrup until it reaches 300 degrees – you can either use the candy thermometer or theh ice bath trick I linked to!
- Remove from heat, and pour into the candy molds
- Let cool
- Once the candies have fully cooled, remove the molds and eat!
Will you be trying this out?!