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Friday, February 24, 2012

Slow day for Sap and Sugar Crystals in the Jar

     It did not go down to freezing last night.  Today hung in the high forties with a misty rain.  Very slow sap day.  I maybe got a quart of sap from six trees.  No matter, boiled it down anyways and added yesterdays partially boiled down three gallon take to it.  I netted about a cup of syrup.
     However, and this disturbs me, there is a lot of maple sugar at the bottom of the second quart jar I have.  I thought it was just minerals that precipitated out, but when I took the jar out of the refrigerator and took a good look at it, I realized it was sugar!  Not a disaster, mind you, sugar can be reconstituted into syrup.  But I just don't know where I went wrong.  Maybe boiled it a tad too long. 
     Professionals and people who rely on what pros say and do, take the temperature of the syrup as it boils.  When it hits 219 F degrees, it is taken off the stove.  I have tried using a candy thermometer, but find that it is hard for me to read.  The steam gets on the glass and as soon as I take it out so that I can read it, the temp starts to drop so I don't get a true reading.  Also, when there is only an inch of syrup in the bottom of the pan it's hard to keep the bottom of the thermometer off the metal.  This is why I have been relying on the bubble method of telling when it is ready as well as relying on when looks like syrup, feels like syrup (on my tongue,) smells like syrup, and tastes likes syrup - then it is a duck!  Just kidding.  Therefore, it must be syrup.
     I'll reconstitute the sugar this weekend.  So far, the first quart looks fine.  It's a nice amber color. Nice and clear.  Minerals at the bottom of the jar.
     We have a cold front coming in tonight.  I'm curious to see how the trees will react to this.  I really like my trees.   

1 comment:

  1. When are we going to have pancakes again? Nothing like the ones you make scratch from flour, with your homemade syrup. Greg


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