I spread out all the Maple recipes from Mom’s big envelope, and took a trip down Memory Lane this morning. So many suppers around our kitchen table, featuring Coleslaw with Maple Dressing, Sticky Buns, Maple Bran Bread… Entries from Maple contests at the Vermont Farm Show, church dinner favorites, recipes I haven’t tried yet.
Maple cake was always topped with butternuts from trees on our farm. We’d bring them home in the fall, green and sticky, staining our hands and clothes. Dried in the attic, then we cracked them in a homemade cracker made from a dynamite box. We’d watch Rin Tin Tin or Sky King and pick them over, treasuring the halves we got out whole. No tiny piece was wasted, then the kitchen wood stove fire was started with the shucks in the morning. My older brother, Stuart, clamped a few nuts in the shop vise, and sawed off slices to make buttons for a handknit sweater.
If you haven’t had Maple Frosting or Fudge with Butternuts, surely you didn’t grow up on a Vermont farm.