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Maple Syrup for Pancakes

  • Ora Sep 9, 2006 10:43 PM
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How do people jazz up maple syrup for pancakes? In a saucepan, I heat maple syrup, a splash of unfiltered apple juice and brandy or rum, and butter. Delicious!

What do you do?

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  1. why jazz up perfection?

    7 Replies
    1. re: tuqueboy

      I second that! I love the organic full maple mid-amber maple from T.J.'s. Such a rich maple flavor. I pour it on my oatmeal in the morning. YUM

      1. re: Kitchen Queen

        Yeah, that was my reaction too. Huh? I just paid top dollar for the best maple syrup I could find, and I should mess with it?

        If I hadn't been raised on blueberry pancakes (I put so many bluerries in them, my son calls them pancake blueberries) with buttermilk and maple syrup, maybe I'd feel differently. Ok, my mom didn't make them that way, but I do.

        Ok #2. I think there are some uses (pancakes are not on the list) where you could get creative. I had a dish in a restaurant a few years back with maple syrup, foie gras, some kind of squash, etc. which was good stuff. But in my kitchen, monkeying with maple syrup has not happened to date...

        1. re: Chris Weber

          Chris-

          Just came from T.J.'s. Bought another bottle of M.S. - Organic grade B. I will brush onto my strip of fresh Salmon then mesquite BBQ on my grill. Will include maple glazed squash, a green something-probably spinach and Swedish Blini. YUM! :)KQ

          1. re: Kitchen Queen

            What's a Swedish Blini?

            TT

          2. re: Chris Weber

            I agree, you can't improve maple syrup.

            However, "top dollar for the best maple syrup" is something of a contradiction in terms. The best is grade B, which is perversely slightly cheaper than the less flavorful grade A.

            1. re: Robert Lauriston

              If you say the best is grade B, which it is, then what I said was I pay top dollar for the best grade B.

              I paid $42 for my last batch of grade B. I could find other grade B for less elsewhere. "A" has nothing to do with discussions of the best.

        2. re: tuqueboy

          I agree...why jazz up perfection. I like grade-b syrup which is a stronger taste.

        3. Exactly! Though I suppose rum, raisin, butter and pecans would go well if drizzling over some banana-nut pancakes!

          TT

          1. I use grade b maple syrup exclusively, and on pancakes (when I have them) I just use it plain.

            But, I do mix it with cocoa powder and add coffee for a sort-of-a mocha. Does that count?

            1 Reply
            1. re: bruce

              It counts :)
              I agree with Grade B--love the intense flavor.

            2. I believe most anything can take a pinch of cayenne on occasion

              1. Well I don't know why anyone would mess with MS for pancakes, I agree with Kirk. Some cayenne (Or any hot sauce) is fantastic mixed with MS. Sweet heat can't be beat.

                DT

                1. love the idea of rum, raisins, butter and pecans...hubby and i are going to Pancake Circus tomorrow after our weekly farmer's market run; something tells me that they won't have any of the above suggestions.

                  1. Maple syrup is a perfect food but occasionally I've been known to add: rose water, essence of violet, hot chili pepper and ground nuts depending on the recipe.

                    Experiment!

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: HillJ

                      Nice ideas! I love creativity...

                      1. re: HillJ

                        Essence of violet, where can that be purchased? sounds good!

                        1. re: morebubbles

                          Well, you could try a health food store near where you live or there's always here:

                          http://www.shopnatural.com/Merchant2/...

                          TT

                      2. If it's good syrup, I heat it up a little. That is all.

                        1. Really good Maple Syrup, preferable Grade B is one of God's perfect miracles. Used as a syrup, it needs nothing added. Warm it a bit, if you like. It is divine on Vanilla Ice Cream.

                          1. No, I don't add anything to my syrup.
                            Sorry, I'm a purist and make my own syrup so I have lots.

                            ...but I do add my syrup to lots of other things to jazz them up.

                            Vinagrettes, oven roasted bacon or sausages, warm on ice cream, BBQ sauce, marinades, between cake layers, roasted sweet / spicy nuts nuts, etc...

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: Mila

                              What kind of syrup are you saying you make? Not, maple, surely?

                              1. re: bruce

                                Yes, really maple. I take a week off work each year and head up north where I tap about 100 sugar maples near the cottage. We usually try and do 2 boildowns with 100 gallons of sap each, dependant on the the weather. The yield is usually about 40 to 1, sap to syrup.

                                My father and grandfather before him made originated the tradition and I am now carrying it on. We have a little sugar shack at the cottage with a 6 by 3 pan for boiling down.

                                After taking up to a week to get your precious gallons of syrup, I am a dedicated maple syrup purist.
                                Though, I would say no if you set down a plate of pancakes with blueberry syrup.

                                1. re: Mila

                                  Yikes, ran out of edit time. I meant I would not say no to pancakes with blueberry syrup.

                                  1. re: Mila

                                    Yum! I am envious of the whole experience.

                            2. I made a wild blueberry maple syrup a few weeks back, as a accompaniement to whole wheat pancakes. Recipe is from 101 Cookbooks blog here:

                              http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/...

                              I know many think maple syrup perfect as is, but this was a lovely way to enjoy the short wild blueberry season. And the pancakes were wonderful, not as heavy as some ww versions but plenty of ww flavor.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: cheryl_h

                                Thank you!!! I love that site but missed this particular entry. This is precisely the type of suggestion I was hoping to illicit. (Not sure why so-called purists are even responding to this post--but its a free country...)

                              2. Yeah, I like heating my Maple syrup for my pancakes, and saving the apple juice and brandy for a early morning "Hot Toddy" ;-)

                                1. I agree that in principle maple syrup is perfection, but if you must... In my family we sometimes serve alongside lemon wedges, and once syrup is poured, squeeze lemon over. Delicious and minimizes cloying sweetness so you can have even more syrup!

                                  1. i don't change anything either. maple syrup really is perfection.

                                    1. Can someone tell me where to get Grade B syrup in NYC/Brooklyn? I have only seen the A and would love to have some B in the house for cooking...thanks-

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: emmielou

                                        I don't know about Brooklyn per se, but you can certainly find grade B at places like Whole Foods and Trader Joe's (house brands) in Manhattan. I'd consider calling places like Fairway and Sahadi.

                                        1. re: emmielou

                                          Any health food store and/or Fairway in Redhook has it.

                                        2. Yes Grade B is better.

                                          I was once gifted with a bottle of Grade A. To boost its impurities to a palatable level, I added 2 tsp of fenugreek seed to the pint jar. (Fen. is the ingredient in "imitation maple flavoring"). Heated it in a crockpot bath for a few hours, then refrigerated, and let it steep a few weeks.

                                          It was good. So I later took some beautiful Grade B and did the same, except this time with the (potential sacrilege here) addition of 20% Blackstrap molasses. It added viscosity and great taste.

                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: FoodFuser

                                            Fenugreek tastes nothing like maple syrup!

                                            TT

                                            1. re: TexasToast

                                              http://www.foodreference.com/html/art...

                                              or

                                              fenugreek+maple=Google+Search

                                              1. re: FoodFuser

                                                Yeah, but TO ME, the two taste nothing alike.

                                                TT

                                          2. Interesting that so many prefer Grade B -- in the standard ranking of maple syrups, that would be the 'industrial strength' version. Maple syrup made from the first days of the season starts out the lightest in color and more delicate in flavor, and then darkens in color and flavor from there.

                                            I will slightly warm up the maple syrup for pancakes (real stuff only, not graded because I get it from a friend in Pennsylvania who sells to his friends only). I do have a couple of recipes using maple syrup -- a pork tenderloin marinated in a maple syrup / dijon mustard / thyme marinade is one of my favorites.

                                            When my brother was in high school, he was given a few taps and buckets that had belonged to my grandfather. So he decided to make maple syrup one year. I think he had about 12 trees, borrowed a couple of milk cans and some other equipment, and boiled it down over an open fire in the back yard. Once it got down to a certain level, my mother would bring it indoors and finish it inside. She also drove the car so he could empty the buckets -- nothing like seeing a Volvo driving down a country road with the trunk open and a couple of milk cans sloshing with maple sap! That was the best maple syrup ever.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: MGC

                                              The syrup guy at my local farmer's market has sold grade D before. Now that's industrial strength. Not much maple flavor, more like 90 weight oil.

                                              I tend to think Americans too often eat what they're told. You're right about sap starting off light, but the trick is to know when to take the best - kind of like the distiller's art of knowing when to cut the heads and tails off to get the best liquor.

                                              And it's not at grade A for syrup. Now, I could see a use for grade A for certain things if you were looking for a more delicate flavor.

                                              Nothing delicate about pancakes, and that's what I'm buying it for. Give me some real flavor to stand up to a hot pancake fried in a pan.