The numbers are in from the Northeast Region Maple Syrup Report, and national maple production in the United States was off 17% in 2021, and 21% off in Vermont, our top maple producing state (New York, Maine, Pennsylvania and New Hampshire ranked second through fifth in production this year.)
In other industry news, a new pest poses a threat to our sugar woods: the Jumping Worm (alias: Crazy Worm). Yuck. But it’s not all bad news: there is an International Maple Hall of Fame (did you know?) and a guy named Ray Bonenberg was just inducted into it.
New in maple: testing production capabilities in New Zealand. Old in maple: the importance of the sugar maple tree to indigenous Wisconsinites.
For filing under cool-new-products-that-contain-maple, see Boozeless Whiskey-Infused Cookie Dough, Yards Brewing French Toast Bites Ale and Japanese French Toast Ice Cream Bars. If that last one is anything like mochi . . . it’s on.
And then there’s the food you make yourself! Make your own Nutella. Make your own nut butters. And stop running to the store when you’ve run out of vanilla extract! Looking to take a favorite meal and make it meatless? Maple can help there too.
Breakfast. Overnight oats, and more overnight oats. Rhubarb Marmalade, Yogurt, and Granola Breakfast Cups. Dandelion Pancakes, Pumpkin Spice Pancakes, and—this one is for Uncle Marcos—French Toast a la Cubana (Cuba Libre!).
In not-breakfast, Bourbon Barbecue Chicken with Red Pepper Mayo and Pineapple Jalapeno Cole Slaw, Salmon Skewers, and Foolproof Vegan Cornbread.
We’re hoping you saved room for dessert, because: Thumbprint Cookies with Rhubarb-Bourbon Jam, Maple Walnut Cranberry Pie, and Cardamom and Carrot Cakes with Maple Icing.
COVID-era backyard booms are still . . . booming! That includes backyard hobbies, tiny-homes and other backyard improvements, and online backyard swimming pool rentals. Citizen scientists are counting backyard species, and citizen conservationists are keeping their backyard riparian areas wild. Others are writing letters to their backyard cicadas, or figuring out why their backyards have been spared this year.
Finally, when cooking in the backyard, you may want to consult “Wild Child,” which has been billed as a great family campout cookbook. And with that, it’s back to the backyard for us!