Thursday, April 21, 2011

Sugaring Off: Boiling Down the Sap

Making maple syrup is a long, steady job, a few intense weeks of collecting, boiling down, and bottling.
While the sap boils, there is time to enjoy the inimitable scent of maple steam,

and time to enjoy a mug of chai tea steeped in hot sap.

Little ones are kept busy with stories and games of fetch-the-stick with a friend's dog. If there are musicians about, there might be some sharing of traditional Appalachian tunes, traded for a Canadian tune or two.

The magic moment arrives, where the bubbles look just right: the syrup is ready to be filtered...


...and bottled!

It's a true labour of time and love, one to be shared with friends, relatives, neighbours, and anyone else who is willing to stop by to lend a hand. The extra-curriculars (singing, sipping, storytelling, snacking) are optional but highly recommended to fully enjoy the experience.

4 comments:

  1. This is beautiful. Reminds me of Little House in the Big Woods.

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  2. LOVE the photos. (I always say that, I know) but really, so beautiful.
    We must come next year to lend a hand!

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  3. Mmmm, we've been enjoying some fresh syrup from my dad. His shack is a little more rustic than yours...one side is open and one of the side walls is made of firewood, so the longer the boiling continues, the shorter the wall becomes!

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  4. Mom always jokes about the fact that there was always a 26 ers of whiskey(maple syrup) on the table at 7:00 am our house when I was little. I just put 2 new 26 ers in the freezer for next winter!

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