Tag Archives: maple syrup

Burger or Everything Sauce

I’m writing this down, finally, because I’m tired of digging out the scrap of paper I figured it out on every two weeks. It started out as a burger sauce, but has since been used on fried fish or chicken, pulled pork, corned beef, pastrami, kebabs, and even a few french fries. The sauce has turned up here in a few posts, but with few details:

Burger Sauce

  • Servings: about 1 1/2 cups
  • Difficulty: easy
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Whisk together the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup Hellmann’s® Mayonnaise
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice

Pour into a squeeze bottle and refrigerate.

Maple Tomato Jam

It was inevitable that with all the tomatoes my husband plants every year, I would come around to tomato jam. I could stick to making only sauce or roasted tomatoes for the freezer, because we always run out before the next growing season comes around, but I wanted to add something new to our tomato arsenal. Plus, we are fond of homemade condiments that dress up plain old traditional foods like burgers, so this glorified ketchup seemed like a good idea. In honor of the occasion, I added a condiments category to the site menu.

My jam is not preserved—because I don’t know how to do that and don’t have canning equipment. Plus, I must admit that I am a little afraid of home-canned foods. So this fresh jam can be refrigerated for a couple of weeks or frozen for longer storage.

Maple Tomato Jam

  • Servings: makes about 4 cups
  • Difficulty: easy
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  • 4 lbs tomatoes, cored and chopped (not seeded)—mine were half San Marzano roma and half Early Girl globe tomatoes
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste or grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground dried hot pepper—mine were California chiles
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt


  1. Combine all ingredients in a large, heavy stockpot.
  2. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium to keep the jam at a low boil for 2 hours. Stir occasionally, and a little more often during the last 20 minutes.*
  3. Fill your jars and cool slightly before sealing with lids. Refrigerate for up to two weeks or freeze. If freezing in plastic bags, cool before filling and sealing.

*I have a gas stove, but you will have to choose the temperatures that you know work on yours. Basically, you want to see bubbling throughout the cooking time—without using a lid. If your temperature is too low, it will take a lot longer for the moisture to evaporate. Mine was thick and ready at 2 hours and 10 minutes. But don’t try to hurry the jam, either, and risk scorching it. Let the flavors develop over the 2 hours at a low and visible boil. Follow the rule of dragging your wooden spoon across the bottom of the pan, waiting for the point when liquid doesn’t run into the path. You think it will never reach that stage, and then the magic just happens.

Maple Pecan Pie

A hunting friend with a farm and a sugar shack (a lucky friend) gave us some of his maple syrup, so I decided to make this pie with a cup of it. There are a lot of recipes for maple pecan pie out there—some of them too fussy and time-consuming—but all you really need to do is take your favorite pecan pie recipe and substitute maple syrup for the corn syrup. The resulting pie is really a sugar custard—wow! that doesn’t sound very healthy, but the Easter holiday is surely one of the worst holidays for over-consumption of sugar. I’m taking the pie with us on our holiday trip, so I only plan to have a tiny, tiny slice and leave the rest for the gang. The rest of the sugar feast (peeps and bunnies), for me, will be watching while others do their thing. One of us has to be sober.

Unlike a regular custard pie, which bakes in about 25 minutes, a pecan pie, with all that sugary syrup takes a little longer to set, up to an hour or more depending on the recipe. With that longer time, I don’t worry about the crust being underdone, so it doesn’t need to be prebaked, but I do worry about the crimped edges. I’m unbelievably out of foil, so I have to use a silicone edge cover, which doesn’t work as well as foil; I’m expecting the crust to be more browned than we would like. Better to have realistic expectations.

I’m making a few changes to the recipe in my Betty Crocker’s New Picture Cook Book (1961):

  1. substituting 1 cup maple syrup for corn syrup
  2. substituting brown sugar for white sugar—which will create a little caramel sweetness with the 1/3 cup butter
  3. adding both chopped and whole pecan halves for a nuttier texture and flavor
  4. adding 1 teaspoon vanilla

Maple Pecan Pie

  • Servings: one 9 inch pie
  • Difficulty: easy
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Preheat oven to 375°

1 9″ unbaked pie crust

3 eggs

2/3 cup packed brown sugar

1/3 cup butter, melted

1 cup maple syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup chopped pecans

1 cup whole pecan halves

  1. Beat eggs and sugar, then beat in butter, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt with a hand mixer.
  2. Stir in chopped nuts and pour mixture into pie shell.
  3. Arrange pecan halves on top in any sort of order or just try to fit them all in to cover.
  4. Cover the pie edges with strips of foil or a pie crust shield. Bake for 40 minutes. The filling will jiggle a little, but don’t overbake; it will set upon cooling. Remove to cooling rack.

Garlic-Sage Pork Tenderloin and Pumpkin Soup

So there were 2 cups of pumpkin left after taking 1 cup out for the Pumpkin Blondies of the previous post. Much to my husband’s dismay, I made a little pumpkin soup for dinner. To  make it more pleasing to him and his sweet tooth, I put in a little maple syrup for sweetness and used full-fat coconut milk to finish it. The other way to his heart is through meat, so a simple pork tenderloin fixed that. As it turned out, he did like the soup, and I presented it as the first course, so he had to go through that course to get to the tenderloin.

In the future, I would maybe make the soup with more of a savory taste by adding some herbs instead of maple syrup, but I did like the coconut milk instead of heavy cream. It was very easy to make with canned pumpkin and chicken stock I had in the freezer, and the remainder has been in the fridge for two days without separating. I can see how roasting your own pumpkin might add good flavor, but finding good eating pumpkins is not that easy here. If you do substitute roasted pumpkin, you’ll have to put it all in the blender before eating to cut through all the squash fiber for a smoother soup.

Garlic-Sage Pork Tenderloin

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Preheat oven to 425°

1 pork tenderloin, trimmed

1 tablespoon garlic paste or minced garlic

1 teaspoon dried rubbed sage

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper

1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil, for marinade

2-3 tablespoons olive oil for browning

  1. Mix marinade ingredients and pour over tenderloin in large zippered bag. Marinate in refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.
  2. In large ovenproof skillet—mine was cast iron—heat 2-3 tablespoons olive oil over high heat. Brown tenderloin on all sides.
  3. Place skillet in oven and roast for 10-20 minutes until internal temperature registers between 150°-160° in thickest part. It will continue to cook during resting and will be slightly pink in the center.
  4. Place on cutting board and cover loosely with foil. Rest for 10 minutes. Slice in 1/2-1 inch slices.
  5. I served it with sautéed spinach.

Pumpkin Soup

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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2 cups chicken stock

2 cups canned pumpkin puree

about 2-4 tablespoons maple syrup (I didn’t measure)

about 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk, whisked or blended until smooth (I didn’t measure)

more coconut milk and dry roasted pumpkin seeds for garnish

  1. In a large saucepan heat chicken stock over medium heat until it begins to steam.
  2. Whisk in pumpkin until smooth.
  3. Whisk in syrup and coconut milk until smooth.
  4. Continue to heat, stirring occasionally, until soup is hot.
  5. Serve in bowls with coconut milk and pumpkin seed garnish. I made a shaky, lop-sided spiral design (ha ha) with the coconut milk, but I think next time, I would just make a line or blob and run a knife through it. The soup is thick enough to place garnish on the top without much sinking.

Can you see my reflection in the spoon on the featured image?