18 February, 2017
Maple taffy ; Snow day activity with kids
When the winter is so long and harsh, there is no way but to adapt to the surroundings. Staying indoors only leads to cabin fever.
If you are like me, brought up in a no snow place, it doesn’t come easy. I always prefer the spot by the window of a warm room to gaze outside.
It surprises me that two countries so different still have similarities. In India the sap from the date Palm tree is much desirable. Only available during the winter months, it is a seasonal delicacy. You can find recipes with the syrup or the jaggery made from it here and here
Maple tree in Canada is so symbolic, the leaf decorates our Flag. The maple syrup obtained from the tree has a wonderful taste and is much sought after.
I remember my mum pouring the date palm syrup on a greased tray to harden, with us siblings impatiently waiting around it to dig in.
Maple taffy is made pretty much on the same principle. The hot syrup poured over snow, cools it down fast. What an excellent way to have fun with kids!
Recipe: Got about a dozen.
100% pure maple syrup 2 cups
Ground almonds 1 Tbsp, optional
Ice cream sticks 12
If doing it outdoor, find a place with clean snow. Light a small stove or wood fire.
Take about 2 cups of maple syrup in a heavy bottom pan on high heat. Do not leave it unattended at any time. Bring it to boil. keep a bowl of cold water handy. When the syrup is bubbling away for about 14-16 minutes, drop a spoonful of this into the cold water. If it forms a ball, the syrup is ready, if not continue a few more minutes and test again,
Pack the snow flat, take spoonful of this mixture and pour over the snow in 4 inches long strips. The snow cools it down right away. Take a ice cream stick and wrap it around the syrup strip. Mold with your hands.
I added a Tbsp of ground almond in the syrup when bubbling.
Use extreme caution handling the hot syrup.
These taffies are hard on teeth or restorations on them.
If snow is unavailable outside, crushed ice from freezer can be used.