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Celebrate Maple Madness Weekend with a Tasty Treat

Mar 22, 2017 06:55PM ● Published by Linda Ditch

This weekend, New Hampshire and Vermont celebrate all things maple with their annual Maple Weekend. Local sugarhouses will be open so you can see how pure maple syrup is made. Many will have samples of fresh syrup, maple candies, and other sweet treats. Some farms will also have pancake breakfasts, horse-drawn wagon rides, and petting zoos. Best of all, you can buy maple syrup right from the producer.

Did you know it takes 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of syrup? When sap comes out of the sugar maple tree, it looks and tastes like slightly sweet water. In the sugarhouse, the sap is boiled in a contraption called an evaporator, traditionally heated by a wood fire, though some producers have gone to cleaner burning oil. When the sap reaches 219º you know you’re making maple syrup.

Besides pancakes and waffles, one of the easiest recipes to make using your fresh syrup is Maple Popcorn. It’s like caramel corn, and kids will love it! You can add your favorite type of nut to the mix, or none at all.


For more information about Maple Madness and to find a sugarhouse location near you, log on to www.nhmapleproducers.com and vermontmaple.org.


Maple Popcorn


Ingredients 

Butter for bowl and spoon
10 cups popped popcorn
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 cup nuts


Directions

1. Butter the inside of a large bowl plus a large mixing spoon. Set aside. Line a large baking sheet with parchment or waxed paper. Set aside.

2. Pour the maple syrup into a deep-sided, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Over medium-high heat, bring the syrup to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and continue to boil until syrup reaches 236º degrees on a candy thermometer.

3. Place the popcorn and nuts into the buttered bowl. Slowly pour the hot maple syrup over the top of the popcorn and nuts, and quickly stir until all the popcorn is coated with the syrup.

4. Pour the popcorn onto the prepared baking sheet and spread into a single layer. Allow the popcorn to cool and set. 

Enjoy or store in an airtight container.

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