I have written about Bixby’s Best maple syrup before – in Sauced in New York’s earlier incarnation on the Times Union website – but with sugaring season upon us once again, it seems a fit topic to return to as material for this blog.
After all, what says spring in the Adirondacks better than maple syrup? Well, other than a freak snowstorm that makes summer seem very, very far away indeed.
So, maple syrup on your pancakes. Drizzled on top of your oatmeal or used to sweeten your rice pudding. At barVino, we use Bixby’s Best in our whipped cream (tip – courtesy of my friend Megan – when using a liquid to sweeten another liquid, add a little powdered sugar to help keep the whipped cream firm longer). I’ve made a maple budino from a NY Times recipe that was a huge hit and that I need to make again soon.
But maple syrup is so more than just a sweet fix for desserts or breakfast. I was at the home of the Bixby’s Best proprietor and his lovely wife for dinner a few weeks ago and I brought over the fixings for blood orange margaritas (with my new favorite tequila, Espolón blanco), but forgot the agave nectar I always use. Luckily, there was a pot of maple syrup cooking off on the stove and it made a most delicious alternative to agave nectar. Sam and Jes and I started talking about having a night where we made different cocktails using both Bixby’s Best maple syrup and the birch syrup that Sam also makes (in much smaller batches).
It could be a dangerous undertaking, but brave souls all, we are more than ready to try.