Making it with maple
Using maple in recipes.
Spring in Michigan is a time for tapping trees and using the sap of the maple. It isn’t just used for pancakes and French toast – maple sugar and syrup can be used in almost any recipe to bring a special touch! If a recipe calls for a sweetener, try to use this Michigan product with wondrous results. Here are a few recipes Michigan State University Extension suggests to start with:
2 pounds dry Navy beans
½ tsp. dry mustard
¼ pound bacon or salt pork
1 small onion, chopped
1 cup maple syrup
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ c. catsup
- Wash and sort the beans, throwing out any stones or damaged beans. Put them in a large pot, cover with water and soak overnight. After soaking, drain water and add fresh. Parboil, drain and place half the beans in your baking dish (a large crockpot or bean pot work well). Score the salt pork and put on top of beans; if using bacon, cut it into squares before placing on beans. Add remaining beans.
- Mix the remaining ingredients and pour over your creation. Then fill the pot with boiling water. Cover and bake until beans are soft – at least four hours.
- Remove the cover the last half hour to let the beans brown. If you need to add more water, do so.
Maple bread pudding
1 c. Maple Syrup
3 eggs, beaten
8 slices bread
1½ c. milk
3 Tbsp. butter or margarine
- Butter a loaf pan. Boil the syrup for five minutes. Butter one side of each bread slice, then dip the whole slice in syrup and arrange, buttered side up, in bottom of loaf pan. Layer remaining slices on top.
- Make custard by combining the eggs, remaining syrup, salt and milk. Pour over the top of the bread.
- Bake at 325 degrees Fahrenheit until the custard is set and the pudding is golden brown, about 50 minutes.
Maple glazed ham
- Bake a six to eight pound fully-cooked ham about half the usual time. Drain the drippings and score the fat diagonally into diamonds. If available, put a whole clove in each center.
- Pour 1/3 cup maple syrup over the ham and bake 15 minutes. Repeat two more times. Bake an additional 30 minutes to achieve a golden brown glaze.
These recipes just highlighted syrup – if you have maple sugar, you can use it in any recipe as well. There are many other ways to enrich your palette with the taste of maple – try it out and be amazed!