“Sugaring season is the season when you tap the trees for sugar that turns into maple syrup. What is that? That’s just so beautiful.’ I like the idea, it’s the very, very first murmurings of spring.” -Beth Ortod
Most of us think of bright flowers, little chicks, sunshine, and warmer weather on the first day of spring.
For New England Innkeepers, on the first day of spring, our thoughts are on maple syrup and the sugaring season. We love to attend and support statewide events, and plan maple-themed weekends (and recipes!) to help our guests celebrate sugaring time.
Syrup makers work around the clock once the spring run has started. Much of the sap is still gathered the old-fashioned way — in buckets hung from trees, and brought in to be boiled down to the syrup consistency over wood fires. While feeding the maple sap into the evaporator, dense, sweet-smelling clouds of steam fill the air as the heat causes the sap to reduce and become more and more concentrated. Did you know that 60 gallons of sap are reduced to just one-and-a-half gallons of syrup?
Maine Maple Sunday is always the fourth Sunday in March. Most Maine sugarhouses offer free maple syrup samples and demonstrations on how pure Maine maple syrup is made during the Maine Maple Sunday weekend. Many farms offer games, activities, treats, sugarbush tours, music, and so much more.
If you happen to be visiting Maine during the festivities, I encourage you to take an active role in the old-fashioned production of Maple Syrup in New England this year by attending an event, sharing information, making a cake with maple syrup to share, or buying real Maple Syrup from your local producer.
Understanding this “beautiful, first murmuring of spring”, gives us a deep sense of appreciation and love for good quality food and those who make it happen.
Happy First Day of Spring!
For More Information, Click Here:
RECIPE: Maple Walnut Cream Cake
- 1/-/12 cups Flour
- 2 Tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice or All Spice
- 1 Tsp Baking Powder
- 1 Tsp Baking Soda
- 1 Tsp Salt
- 1-1/4 C Sugar
- 1 Stick of Unsalted Butter, Melted and Cooled
- 3 Large Eggs
- 1 15oz Can of Unsweetened Pumpkin Puree
- 1-1/2 C Heavy Whipping Cream (very cold)
- 1/4 Real Maine Maple Syrup
- 1/4 C Walnuts
Bake the Cake:
- Preheat oven to 350°
- Grease two 8″ Round Cake Pans, line with parchment paper, grease parchment and flour pans.
- Combine flour, pumpkin spice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
- In a standard mixer, beat sugar, melted butter and eggs on Med-High speed until fluffy (3-4 Minutes).
- Reduce speed to low and add pumpkin puree until mixed in.
- Add flour mixture slowly until fully incorporated.
- Split batter evenly between cake pans.
- Bake 20-23 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- Cool completely.
Make the Maple Whipped Cream Frosting:
In a standard mixer with a whisk attachment, whip heavy cream and maple syrup on Medium speed until peaks form (3-4 minutes).
Assemble the Cake:
- When cakes are completely cool, carefully slice through each cake to make 4 circles.
- Place first piece on a cake plate and spread one fourth of whipped frosting evenly over top.
- Continue layering until all 4 pieces are stacked and frosted.
- Garnish with Walnuts.