It’s time to beat the heat this spring and summer with dishes that just don’t only provide an array of color but will also provide a boost of nutrition. To do both, each dish incorporates 100 percent Canadian Maple Syrup. For starters, this type of maple syrup contains more antioxidants than refined sugar and agave nectar. According to a study by Pharmaceutical Biology, pure maple syrup contains up to 24 different antioxidants, which can help reduce inflammation, prevent cancer, and boost the integrity of your skin. Note: grade B maple syrup contains more antioxidants than the lighter syrups.
When you’re watching the amount of sugar you’re eating, consider using maple syrup because it has a lower glycemic index score (54) compared to sugar cane (64). Simply put, pure maple syrup will impact your blood sugar levels less dramatically. The bonus of that: pure maple syrup is diabetic friendly. A study published by the Journal of Functional Foods found that the phenolic compounds present in maple syrup inhibit a-amylase and a-glucosidase (enzymes responsible for carbohydrate digestion), which ultimately help to manage type 2 diabetes. To reap the benefits of this power food, check out the recipes below.
In a bowl, combine the maple syrup, butter, salt and pepper. Set aside.
Remove the first layer of husks from each ear of corn.
Gently spread out the remaining husk leaves, remove the corn silk and baste the corn with the maple-butter mixture. Pat the remaining husks back around the cob and wrap each in aluminum foil.
Place corn on the grill and close the cover.
After four minutes, give the corn a quarter turn and close the cover. Repeat three times until all four sides have been grilled (a total of 16 minutes). Unwrap, remove husks and enjoy!
2. Chewy Maple Energy Bites
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup maple sugar
1/3 cup pure maple syrup from Canada
1/4 cup canola oil
2 egg whites
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 ripe banana, mashed with a fork
Pieces of nuts and dried fruit for garnish
Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and lemon zest.
In another bowl, use an electric mixer to combine the maple sugar with the canola oil and maple syrup.
Add the egg whites and beat until smooth and uniform. Gradually fold in the dry ingredients. Then stir in lemon zest and banana. Drop a heaping teaspoon of thick batter onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, leaving 2″ of space between each.
Add one or two pieces of nuts or dried fruit to center of each disc, if desired.
Bake, one sheet at a time, for about 8 minutes or until the bottom of the cookies have browned.
3. Fruity Chicken Kebabs
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed
1 onion, quartered
2 apples, cored and quartered
1 cup apple juice
1/2 cup pure maple syrup from Canada
3 tablespoons tamarind sauce
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 pinch celery seeds
Salt and pepper, to taste
Cranberry Sauce Ingredients:
1 cup reserved marinade
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup from Canada
Mix the marinade ingredients in a large zip-top bag. Add the chicken cubes, onion and apple quarters. Refrigerate 2 to 4 hours, turning bag occasionally.
Preheat the grill to medium high. Remove the kebab ingredients from the marinade. Reserve 1 cup marinade and set aside; discard remaining marinade. On long bamboo skewers, alternate the chicken, onion and apple. Grill the kebabs 7 minutes. Turn them over, baste with marinade and cook another 7 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
Meanwhile, pour the reserved marinade into a small saucepan. Add cranberries and maple syrup. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes. Serve with the kebabs.
3. Maple Pulled Pork
1 ½ teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 ½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon cayenne
1 boneless pork butt or shoulder roast, trimmed
1 onion, sliced thin
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup maple syrup
¼ cup tomato paste
Rub meat with chili powder, paprika, cumin, cayenne and salt.
Place onion and garlic in a slow cooker and place meat on top of onions.
Combine vinegar maple syrup and tomato paste in a small bowl. Pour over meat.
Cover slow cooker; cook over low heat for 8 hours or until meat is very tender.
Remove meat and onions; pull apart into shreds and place in a bowl. Spoon fat from cooking liquid. Moisten pulled pork with some of the cooking liquid.
Serve pork on buns with barbecue sauce and maple coleslaw on the side.
4. Carrot And Zucchini Salad With Maple Syrup
1 lb. carrots, peeled and grated
1 zucchini, grated
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
In a large bowl, combine the first 6 ingredients. Add the sunflower seeds right before serving.
5. Maple Ice Tea
1 cup boiling water
4 bags of green tea
½ cup pure maple syrup
6 cups of water
Mixed fruit for garnish
Boil 1 cup of water
Steep 4 bags of green tea
Add ½ cup of pure maple syrup and let the mixture steep for 5 minutes
Remove tea bags and set tea aside
In a pitcher, combine 6 cups of water, tea, and the juice of one lemon
Serve in glasses over ice and garnish with a slice of lemon and mixed fruit, such as grapes or kiwi.