Black Walnut Syrup

Catch and Store Energy, Create Vision and Respond to Change, Cultivate Diversity, Food, Make it Yourself, Make No Waste, Obtain a Yield, Permaculture for Children, Permaculture Principles, Use and Value Gifts from Nature / Friday, April 10th, 2015

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We lost another one of our maple trees this past year, leaving not much chance of maple syrup production.  We had heard about tapping black walnut trees, and since we have two nice sized ones have been dutifully collecting sap.  Alright, so perhaps I haven’t been that good at keeping up with it, but Rob has, and in the end we have gathered quite a lot of sap.  At the beginning of the season, we decided that it would be too much work to boil all the sap down into syrup, so we fed it to the children as a refreshing and healthy drink.  We had both Maple and Black Walnut sap running at the same time, which was lovely for comparison sake.  I would describe the Maple sap as quite sweet with a sugary flavour, whereas the Walnut sap was a more ‘earthy’ flavour, and less sweet.  I preferred the Walnut sap, as it offered a more ‘adult’ flavour.

Then the sap really started to flow, and we had more than we could drink…the fridge was filling quickly, so we decided to boil it.  It has been several weeks of temperatures fluctuating around 0, so we’ve had quite a bit of volume in recent weeks.  This morning, we finished boiling the sap down to a syrup, and the result is amazing!

Once boiled down, it looks the same as Maple Syrup.  It thickened nicely, and seems to have boiled down quicker than the maple.  The flavour reminds me of caramel corn; buttery and nutty.  I would also claim that in its syrup form, it also retains a more refined flavour…one I could get used to!  There is no doubt that I’ll be tapping our Walnut trees again next Spring!!

If you’re interested in tapping your own tree, here is a great article on how to do it yourself.

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