Treeless Maple Syrup

 Treeless Maple Syrup from Taming the Wilds

Treeless Maple Syrup from Taming the Wilds

After pack weight, trail food would have to be one of the most talked about hiking subjects. I am fascinated by the creative recipes written in older hiking books. The most interesting come from a time before commercial hiking food, when hikers managed with some fresh produce and dry staples, adding to their larder by hunting and gathering. Most recipes are fairly predictable rabbit stew, fish, beans and breads.

There is one recipe, however, that stuck in my head more than any other. Treeless Maple Syrup from Bradford Angier's 1967 publication "Taming the Wilds."

 Finished Syrup

Finished Syrup

This recipe is for those living outside the North East who do not have access to maple trees.

6 medium potatoes 2 cups water 1 cup brown sugar 1 cup white sugar

Peel the potatoes. Boil uncovered with 2 cups of water until one cup of fluid remains. Remove the potatoes and use any way you want. Stirring the liquid until the boiling point has been once again reached, slowly add the sugar. Once this has entirely dissolved set the pan off the heat to cool slowly.
— Bradford Angier - Taming the Wilds, 1967

It can then be bottled.

Being a newcomer to New England, and not having had the chance to make my own maple syrup yet, I thought I would give it a try. I'd love to report it was incredible but as per Angier's instructions I am leaving it to mature. An initial tasting was accurate to Angier's prediction, realising my "worst fears" flavour wise. He advised placing it in a dark place for several days the results of which he promises will be surprising. I shall report back once ready.

UPDATE: Results are in.

Posted on November 13, 2011 and filed under Books, Recipe.