Maple syrup might be the essential ingredient for flapjacks and waffles, but its utility extends far beyond the breakfast table. In its purest and most potent state, you have maple candy, and “sugar on snow,” a traditional treat that doesn’t even require a kitchen. Heat syrup to 232 degrees Fahrenheit, then drizzle the amber liquid over shaved ice, then twist it on a spoon until it becomes a gooey, caramel mouthful of taffy. There are also plenty of other ways to enjoy one of nature’s sweetest creations. We asked some of our staff and contributors to volunteer their favorite recipes. From food writer Mark Bittman’s homemade granola to a Vermont sugar maker’s mint maple julep, these offerings span the cookbook.
From Mark Bittman, author of How to Cook Everything
½ pound rhubarb
1/3 cup maple Syrup
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups ricotta
Dice the rhubarb into small cubes and toss with the maple syrup. Add 1 teaspoon of orange zest, 1 teaspoon lemon zest, juice of one lemon, and one teaspoon salt. Place mixture in a shallow baking dish and cover. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Let cool to room temperature.
Slice baguette and toast slices (about 12 pieces). Place generous portion of ricotta on baguette and top with rhubarb mixture. Top with olive oil drizzle.
Makes 4-6 crudité portions.