Maple or maple syrup: properties and uses in the kitchen

If you like sweets, you cannot miss the following article on maple syrup, a product capable of improving the organoleptic characteristics of many desserts.

Last update: June 22, 2022

Maple syrup is a natural sweetener used as a substitute for table sugar and that it comes from the sap of a tree that has the same name. It is a vegetable native to the North American area, although Canada is the largest producer worldwide today.

This sweetener, also known as maple syrup, can be found in almost any supermarket and offers a number of health benefits, especially when compared to other types of sweeteners.

Before we begin, it is important to note that the presence of sweet taste in the guideline should be reduced for the body to function optimally. Most of the diets, at present, present a dominance of these organoleptic characteristics, which can be harmful in the medium term. The presence of sweets in the mouth could trigger insulin production, which would generate pancreatic stress.

What is maple syrup?

Maple syrup is a golden, viscous, sweet and aromatic product that is used to sweeten culinary preparations. It could be compared to honey or other vegetable syrups, as is the case with fruit syrups. Normally, it is used in confectionery or pastry recipes, although it can also be added to drinks, toast and dairy products.

Its preparation is quite simple. The first thing to do is get the sap from the wood of maple trees. To do this, a cut is made on the bark of the trunk and a bucket is placed just below.

After a while, it will fill with a thick syrup. The syrup is then filtered and graded for flavor and color before bottling. You can even start certain reverse osmosis processes to remove excess water.

It is important to note that there are different types of maple syrup. Grade A syrups are the highest quality. They hardly have any imperfections inside. The color is uniform and the taste very pure.

In general, they provide very intense organoleptic characteristics. Then, we should talk about grade 0. In this case, there may be impurities or a somewhat cloudy color; the quality is inferior.

Finally, there are the so-called Substandard. These are more like a sweet syrup as such, without the typical flavor and aroma notes of maple syrup. It is the lowest quality product that may have undergone an intense refining process.

Nutritional properties of maple syrup

Maple syrup is primarily made up of sucrose and water. For this reason, it causes a significant impact on blood glucose levels. You have to be careful with this, because Regular consumption of simple sugars has been shown to increase the risk of developing pathologies metabolic, as is the case of type 2 diabetes. This is evidenced by research published in the journal Current Diabetes Reports.

For every 100 grams of product, maple syrup provides about 265 kcal, with 67% coming from simple carbohydrates. It is true that white sugar has a higher glycemic index, but for practical purposes the impact of both foods on the body is quite similar. Neither of them should be abused to ensure the proper functioning of the metabolism in the medium term.

However, maple syrup contains some phytochemicals with antioxidant capacity. These elements neutralize the formation of free radicals and their subsequent accumulation in the body’s tissues, as confirmed by a study published in the journal Infectious Disorders Drug Targets. However, this will not be enough to offset the effect of free sugars.

Pay attention to the quality of the maple syrup when you buy it.

How to use maple syrup in cooking?

Maple syrup is a product that can improve the final result of many sweet preparations. It is included in recipes as a substitute for other sweeteners in order to provide very characteristic flavor notes.

Although it is possible to serve it raw as a dressing, there is also the opportunity to use it in different dishes that will go through cooking processes. It can even look good on items that will be baked.

Of course, we must bear in mind that it is an edible with a greater sweetening capacity than sugar. Therefore, the amount used in recipes should be corrected if it is used to replace other sweeteners. Typically, a total of 3/4 cup of maple syrup should be added for every cup of sugar.

When storing this product, It must be ensured that it is stored in a cool and dry place, away from sunlight. It can have an extensive useful life, even greater than 2 years. Of course, when it is opened, it is best to keep it refrigerated, in the refrigerator door. In these conditions, it is preserved for a year without problem.

Maple syrup, a very tasty sweetener

As you have seen, maple syrup is a sweetener with characteristic flavor notes which can be excellent to improve the final result of different desserts.

It is often used mixed with butter, added to cereals, in the form of toppings and even as part of the glaze for savory dishes such as roast meat. Its useful life is long and there are different types of qualities available in the market.

To finish, remember that you have to be moderate with the presence of sweets in the guideline. These usually impact on glycemia generating an overdemand to the pancreas.

It is true that if physical exercise is carried out on a regular basis, the dangers are less, but even so, it will be necessary to limit the consumption of this type of food. Above all, you have to look at the labels in case they are of industrial origin to rule out the presence of trans fats.

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