When I came to Canada, I was exposed to authentic maple syrup and it’s in a league of its own – delicious! There’s no time for the cheap pretend maple syrup business that I’ve only known my entire life. I’ll just say this… I’ll never buy Aunt Jemima again.
This last weekend I got to experience maple syrup in all its glory, we went to a Sugar Shack (AKA Cabane à Sucre)! The Sugar Shacks are where the sap of the maple tree is boiled and made into maple syrup. Most Sugar Shacks in Quebec are only open during sugaring off season – which is normally the spring.
As promised in yesterday’s post, I want to share some photos from my first Sugar Shack experience!
This is where the magic happens. A friendly gentleman (who knew English fairly well!)
poured the syrup and I wrapped it around my stick and enjoyed every morsel.
The Sugar Shack experience is not just about the syrup, it’s also about a grand spread of food to share family style around the table. There was ham, baked beans, cole slaw, beets, pickles, 2 kinds of potatoes, sausages, dinner rolls, pea soup, 4 types of dessert… and oreilles de crisse.
I didn’t really understand what oreilles de crisse could be as Julie described them to me before we went. Translated they could mean “Christ’s ears” and I was like, what the hell? But really, they are just deep-fried smoked pork jowls. Crunchy salted fat.
The food was delicious and abundant! My favorite part was the maple grandfathers,
a dumpling covered in the most savory maple sauce!
We ate so much food and still brought a full take home box with us when we left. This was a fabulous experience, but my blood sugar level and waist line could not handle it on a frequent basis.
I hope you have enjoyed hearing about my first experience with the Sugar Shack. I’m off to go help Julie put some stationery packs together for the SSS!