Maple, Canada’s emblematic tree and symbol of the spring resurrection of nature, offers us its syrup. This syrup discovered by Amerindians allows vegetarians to sweeten their food on a daily basis, without fear. Maple syrup is made from maple sap. In spring, the starch stored inside the maple trunk is converted into sugar that eventually rises in the sap. Harvested by maple syrup producers between February and early April, maple sap is transformed into maple syrup by evaporation in sugar shacks. It takes an average of 40 litres of maple water to get one litre of syrup.
Maple syrup is composed of 32% water and 68% carbohydrates, out of which 80% is sucrose. Other sugars found in this product are glucose and fructose. Compared with an equal amount of table sugar, the energy value of maple syrup represents one third less calories.
Natural and allergen-free syrup
Produced solely from maple sap, maple syrup undergoes no transformation, apart from cooking, and contains neither coloring nor additives. In addition, Quebec maple syrup producers sign a declaration of non-use of allergens during the manufacturing process guaranteeing a product that is all natural.
A real source of antioxidants
Maple syrup is one of the only sugars to contain antioxidants in significant quantities (3 to 5 times more than honey): a 60 ml portion of maple syrup has an antioxidant capacity comparable to that of a banana or a part of broccoli. This is because of the presence of manganese that participates in cellular protection and polyphenols that help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular diseases.
Good for sportspersons
Maple syrup also contains more minerals than most other sweeteners. With its low glycemic index, ( 55 against 70 for sugar) it seems to be a good ally for sportspersons. It is an interesting source of energy after any activity and all of natural origin. This natural syrup is marketed as an energy food and sold on the booming sports nutrition market in the United States.
Maple syrup can replace refined sugar in all culinary preparations. Used as a sweetener in hot drinks or breakfast cereals, its light caramel flavour enhances pancakes, yogurts, waffles, muffins, fruit salads and cakes. It can also accompany salty dishes.
An environmentally friendly production
Maple growers never harvest sap from a maple tree whose trunk is less than 20 cm in diameter. The general rule is to wait until 45 years after planting a maple tree before beginning to harvest its sap. A maple tree can live up to 300 years, or even more!
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- Maple Syrup: Properties and Nutritional Values
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