One of the things NH is known for is its maple syrup. This weekend, more than 65 sugar houses across the state had open houses as they are in the middle of syrup production season. The season lasts about 4-6 weeks when the nights are still below freezing, but the days are above freezing.
Even though we were pretty busy, we still were able to visit one! (Next year, we’ll do all 65. Kidding.)
We went to Grant Family Pond View Maples in Weare.Where we had some very yummy maple chili.
And saw inside the sugar house and learned all about the syrup process. And bought some maple cream.
Whether you like it or not, I am going to educate you. (Little secret, you can actually just stop reading right here.)
Anyways, it takes about 40 gallons of sap from maple trees to make one gallon of syrup. People “tap” the trees in late winter/early spring. The sap, which actually comes out as 98% water and only 2% sugar, pours into buckets, or can be vacuum pumped through tubes to the sugar house. There’s some complex chemistry going on to make sure the sap has the correct sugar content (67%) as it is boiled down. The sweeter the sap, the less water that needs to be evaporated to make the syrup. Pure maple syrup has no fat and no protein, but has calcium, iron and thiamine.
I now know why maple syrup costs so much! But, seeing the inner workings of a sugar house, J and I decided that if ever we have a maple tree on our property, we are definitely going to tap that %$#, I mean tree.