Sunday, February 28, 2010
This year seemed as though so many little life happenings led us away from watching the weather and getting jobs completed before we begin the maple sugaring season. Repairs to equipment, cleaning buckets and the evaporator along with splitting lots and lots of wood all need to be done around the time you begin to tap trees.
The warm weather we have received this last week was a sure indicator that we could wait no longer to begin this special time in Vermont.
The children dressed in warm and water proof clothes all helped as we tapped our trees one by one and hung the buckets. It almost becomes a little assembly line with everyone having their specific job to do; drill the hole in the tree, tap the spout into place, hang the bucket and secure the lid.
After all the maple trees are tapped, we need plenty of patience. Every year after we have tapped the trees, we wait and wait because it seems as though it takes a few days before the sap begins to pour. We all question ourselves -did we tap to early or late? Has the frost in the ground melted enough so that the trees can release the sap? Eventually, with the weather perfect the sap begins to drip into the buckets. It is the most simple but joyful sound we hear- the sap as it slides out of the spout one drop at a time and taps the bottom of the metal buckets.
As we tapped the trees this year,the temperature was around 38 degrees and a few drops of the sweet sap dripped into the buckets. With a cold night with a temperature in the 20's and a warm day in the mid 30's to low 40's we may have the sap running. Then we will collect the sap and boil it for many hours. Then it is the most important job-tasting the sweet warm syrup.
Cross your fingers for a successful year.
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
After a busy morning, sometimes we need to have make a quick lunch. Depending upon ingredients in the refrigerator on of the children's favorite sandwich in our cinnamon turkey sandwich.
We use our home baked cinnamon bread for this delicious sandwich.
2 slices of cinnamon bread per sandwich
3 slice of your favorite turkey luncheon meat
1 slice of Vermont cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon of apple butter
Layer turkey on cinnamon bread. Add cheese and then spread a tablespoon of apple butter on the cheese. Top sandwich with the other slice and enjoy such a simple but definitely delicious sandwich.