April 2, 2015 at 2:46 p.m.

Let's use real maple syrup this week

Let's use real maple syrup this week
Let's use real maple syrup this week

This is the time of year that the sap from the maple trees is flowing, depending on the weather. The wonderful natural sweetener can be drizzled over waffles, pancakes, biscuits, French toast, ice cream, etc. Or, baked in cake, cookies, breads, muffins, baked beans and if you add a little syrup to a glass of hot lemonade (kind of like a hot toddy, without the liquor!), it will soothe a sore throat and take the edge off a cold. (Chicken soup will do the same for a cold) Be aware when a recipe calls for maple syrup to use just that, not the maple flavor syrup. However, some recipes will call for maple flavored syrup.


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MAPLE 
GINGERBREAD
1 egg, well beaten
1 c. pure maple syrup
1 c. sour cream
2-1/3 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1-1/2 t. ginger
1/4 t. salt
1/4 c. melted butter

In a small bowl, combine first three ingredients, beating well. In another bowl, combine next four ingredients; mix with a wire whisk until thoroughly combined. Stir liquid mixture into flour mixture, beating until smooth. Beat in butter. Pour batter into a well-greased 9x13 inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.

When cool, frost with...

MAPLE NUT
FROSTING
3 c. powdered sugar
1/3 c. butter or margarine, softened
1/2 c. pure maple syrup
1/4 c. finely chopped pecans or walnuts

In a large bowl, combine sugar and butter, mixing well. (Sugar mixture will be stiff) Slowly add syrup, beating until smooth. Stir in nuts. Frost cake when cool. Makes 15 servings.
Note: You can add a couple of tablespoons of the syrup to sugar mixture so it’s not so hard to mix.

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MAPLE BRAN
MUFFINS
3/4 c. pure maple or maple flavored syrup
2 large eggs
2-1/2 c. bran flakes cereal, coarsely crushed
1-8 oz. container sour cream
1 c. flour
1 t. baking sofa
1/2 c. chopped walnuts

Line muffin pan with paper liners. In a medium bowl, beat maple syrup and eggs until blended. Beat in bran flakes; let stand five minutes. Beat in sour cream until well mixed. With a large spoon, stir in flour and baking soda just until flour is moistened. Batter will be lumpy. Gently mix in nuts. Spoon batter into muffin cups. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until lightly browned and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in a pan. Serve warm or remove to wire rack to cool. Makes 12 muffins.

Note:  If you wish, serve with...


MAPLE BUTTER SPREAD
1/2 c. butter or margarine, softened
1/4 c. pure maple or maple flavored syrup

Beat butter in small bowl until smooth. Slowly add syrup, beating until light and fluffy. Spread on muffins, bagels or English muffins. Makes about 3/4 c.

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MAPLE WALNUT
BANANA BARS
1 c. butter
2/3 c. packed brown sugar
2/3 c. pure maple syrup
2 eggs
1 large very ripe banana, mashed (1/2 c.)
1 t. vanilla
1-1/2 c. flour
3/4 c. whole wheat flour
1-1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. each, salt and cinnamon
1 c. chopped walnuts, divided
3/4 c. dried cranberries

In a large saucepan, combine butter and brown sugar over medium heat, stirring until butter melts and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Stir in syrup. Stir in eggs, one at a time. Stir in banana and vanilla.

In a medium bowl, combine flours, baking powder, salt and cinnamon; stir into syrup mixture.

Stir in half of the walnuts and all of the cranberries.

Spread batter into greased 9x13 inch baking pan. Sprinkle with remaining nuts. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean.

Cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Cut into 24 bars.

Thought for the Day: May your Easter celebration be one of love, joy and hope as we celebrate the good news that He is Risen. Alleluia! In my native tongue, Christos Voskres (Christ is Risen), Voistinnu Voskres (He is Risen, Indeed), Alleluia!

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