The maple trees are all tapped now, and it’s just a matter of time before the big festival in a couple of weeks. We call it “Maple Syrup Sunday,” and I’ll be sure to take some photos of it. In the meantime, because the weather has been so warm, the trees have been tapped for a while now. In fact, I know many people who have made quite a bit of syrup already! That’s what a warm winter and early spring can do. Of course, I have seen the reverse with the sap not running until sometime in April.
|Sap collecting, the old-fashioned way.|
Maple syrup making is a time-honored tradition here in Maine. Many people use the new-fangled plastic barrels with plastic lines running from tree tap to tree tap, the sap all running together through long lines into the barrels. But there are still a lot of us who use the old galvanized steel buckets. The one is this photo is relatively new. I’ve certainly seen them in worse condition, nothing better than old rusted buckets, really. But the final syrup tasted just as sweet and fine.
I get spoiled living here in the far northeast of the country with homemade maple syrup available to me all year long. It tastes phenomenal. If you have only had maple syrup in plastic jars from a supermarket, you must make it point to get yourself some real Maine maple syrup.
In any event, I guess I am getting ahead of myself. Maple Syrup Sunday is two weeks from now. It seems like an eternity. It is truly one of my favorite days of the year. Enjoying a sweet product from the natural trees around here beats that highly-processed, bleached, chemical-extracted, crystalline white stuff called “sugar” any day of the year.
That--and it just gives me a real connection to my local surroundings.