Being snowbound makes it impossible to keep up my regular restaurant routine, so I’m offering a rare recipe post that’s not really a recipe but a snowy day activity: making maple syrup candy.
It’s ridiculously easy to make: Heat a 1/3 cup (or more) maple syrup over medium to medium high heat, stirring constantly to keep the foam down, for a couple minutes or more. Those in possession of a candy thermometer can shoot for 18 to 40 degrees above the boiling point of water; the hotter the syrup gets, the harder its setting consistency. I like the caramely texture of the lower boiling point, but some people prefer the less messy and gorgeous amber glass like quality of the hard candy.
Allow syrup to cool slightly in the pan. Then, take outside and pour over clean, freshly fallen snow that’s atop a low bush or wall, the better for wee ones to watch. (If you’re a stickler for cleanliness, you can scoop snow onto a plate instead.)
Fans of Laura Ingall Wilder may remember the author’s vivid descriptions of this candy: It is warm, buttery in flavor, gooey, and delicious when eaten outside while making a snow fort with your daddy.