Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Finishing the Maple Syrup

We finished the first 20 gallons of maple syrup last night. It reduced down to 12 eight oz. jars perfectly, which works out to 3/4 of a gallon, so we were a little sweeter than the average 40 to 1 ratio.

We had refrigerated the reduced sap from the out door fire (see yesterday's post Old Fashioned Maple Kettle Syrup) and brought it in to finish it on our stove so we could regulate the temperature a bit better in the final stages.

We brought it up to a simmer so that it would pour thinner and be easier to strain.

We strained it through 2 cotton towels in a colander.

This was the gunk that was left. Mostly bits of ash and soot.

Once clear and deeply golden, we returned it to the clean pot and let it boil again.

It took 2 additional hours on the stove to boil down and come up to temperature. 219 degrees on a candy thermometer, or seven degrees above boiling means the sugar content is at syrup level.

We double checked with a taste test and checked for tracing on the back of a large spoon. Tracing is when the syrup no longer drips like water, but holds together and runs like a sheet.

While the syrup was reducing, we processed our canning jars by washing them in hot soapy water and then boiling the jars and lids for ten minutes to sterilize.

When the syrup was done we immediately poured the boiling liquid into the jars and topped with the canning lids. While they cooled, the lids popped that familiar "pop" that always makes me smile.

To see more about Maple Syruping from Iron Oak Farm click here, or visit our Facebook page.

There are possible promo codes available to save money on all the supplies you need for making maple syrup.


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