Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Maple Syrup in the City

Not Far From the Tree held our second annual Sugaring Off Party at Dufferin Grove Park on Sunday and the weather was perfect, which meant this year we were able to have a campfire!

Like last year, we spent the day before cooking down 96 l of sap over the gas stove in the Zamboni kitchen, reducing it to about 20 l.
At that concentration, you can taste the maple flavour and it is quite sweet but still not much like syrup. For the party we were serving small samples of this while further reducing the remainder by boiling it in an open kettle over the fire.

We also expanded our sugar shack (aka the zamboni garage) to included a Maple marketplace where people could taste and purchase lots of yummy treats made from local maple syrup. My personal favourite was the maple cheddar.

Volunteers were out in full force to make sure everything ran smoothly.

Because we've had cooler temps this year the skating rink was still open and inside the rink house the Park staff was serving up a delicious pancake breakfast with beans and sausage. There was also game and crafts and some great entertainment!

The most popular place to be was around the campfire! The bubbling syrup gave off a wonderful scent and visitors were treated to performance of a maple syrup-themed legend by aboriginal story teller Liny Kinoshameg.

Best of all was the sweet taste of maple syrup made from our very own backyard trees!

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