Hear the most recent news from Essex Farm directly from Kristin Kimball below:
Of all the work we do on this farm, sugaring is the sweetest, even if you don’t count the end product. Is it even work to spend a sunny late-winter afternoon tromping through the woods, from tree to tree, with frosty-sweet sap to drink out of the pails when the exercise makes you thirsty? We got a two day run before the cold clamped down on us again. We collected 350 gallons in two loads on Monday, using Jake and Abby to pull the wagon. The trail was already broken so the pull was not as difficult for the horses as it was the day we tapped, even though their load was heavier.
The sun was low by the time we brought in the second wagon, and we still had to set up the holding tank and evaporator, bucket the sap from the wagon to the tank, get the fire going and the split wood stacked. When all that was finished, it was night. The forecast called for a stretch of valve-crackingly cold weather. If we were going to make syrup from this sap, it had to happen immediately, so Mark volunteered (or rather was conscripted) for an all-nighter. Scott joined him for a few hours to learn the process. Aubrey brought sustenance in the form of chocolate chip cookies. When I woke up in my warm bed the next morning, Mark was just finishing the last draw. He made seven gallons. Scott was shocked. This is his first sugar season, and he couldn’t quite believe how many hours of work it took to fill those precious jars. I am a jaded veteran and was surprised that we got as much as we did, since the sugar content of the sap seemed fairly low. But we all agree the first run of 2014 produced a particularly delicious syrup… Continue reading this Essex Farm Note.
- Essex Farm: Lamb Forecast (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Essex Farm: Preservation Tips (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Essex Farm: Soybean Products (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Essex Farm: Annual Vet Meeting (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Essex Farm: Winter Wonder (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)