• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com pie forums private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • Leigh Tate
  • jordan barton
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Nicole Alderman
stewards:
  • r ranson
  • paul wheaton
  • Greg Martin
master gardeners:
  • Carla Burke
  • John F Dean
  • Jay Angler
gardeners:
  • Nancy Reading
  • Mike Barkley
  • L. Johnson

Moldy maple syrup - safe to eat? And cook down so it won't mold again?

 
Posts: 54
Location: California, Redwood forest valley, 8mi from ocean, elev 1500ft, zone 9a
20
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I don't use maple syrup very often, and have two open bottles of it that have mold on the surface.  I've read on the internet that it's safe to skim the mold off and eat the syrup.  In my case there are two kinds of mold, one has a thin white mold right on the surface of the syrup.  The other has what looks like a light brown yeast on the surface - it looks like bread yeast actually.

I don't have a fridge so there's no way to keep this from happening other than eating the syrup quickly after opening.

I have two questions:

1.  Anyone agree or disagree on the safety of eating moldy maple syrup?  (after skimming the mold.)  I won't sue.

2.  Has anyone cooked their syrup down to a lower moisture content so that it won't spoil?  i.e. a thick syrup in between maple sugar and syrup?  I don't see why this wouldn't work, I suppose the reason syrup is sold with so much water is tradition, so it is thin enough to pour, and perhaps originally to save on the effort of cooking it down.
 
gardener
Posts: 2434
Location: South of Capricorn
1052
dog rabbit urban cooking writing homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
When I left the US I brought a half gallon of maple syrup with me, in hopes that it would do for a while. It went moldy in the fridge over a few months.... green mold, it smelled, and it still hurts to think about how I had to pour it down the drain!! (last year I bought another jug, and so far it's still good, living in my fridge. No longer having children who swig from the jug may have helped it stay this time....)

that said, I am cool with paring mold off my fancy cheese and eating it. I think the appearance and smell of your mold may lead you to decide what to do with it. I do think concentrating it will help it last longer- here we do that with sugar cane juice to make molasses, and if you boil it enough it becomes sugar (piloncillo, rapadura, jaggery). If it's still liquid to some extent it will eventually ferment (I've had molasses decide it wants to become rum in my closet). I think if it were me and I had a non-nasty-smelling mold I could scrape off I would consider boiling down what is left. As always, use your best judgment!
 
gardener
Posts: 1000
Location: the mountains of western nc
225
forest garden trees foraging chicken food preservation wood heat
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
if it’s real maple syrup and it was stopped at the right time (66.9% sugar), any further and you start getting crystallization (and if you keep adding heat once you’ve got crystals you start running the risk of caramelization/scorching)…maybe a dehydrator or another lower-heat option?
 
gardener
Posts: 758
Location: Ontario - Currently in Zone 4b
461
dog foraging trees tiny house books bike bee
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ours did this. My mother cooked to kill the mold, then refrigerated it again.

Honestly, though no one has died or gotten ill, IMO it tastes bad and I don't use it much. So it's lingering in the fridge.  My mother claims it tastes fine.

 It hasn't molded again, making me wonder if the original makers (it's home made) didn't sterilize the jars, or didn't reduce it to the correct sugar content.

I don't see why it COULDN'T be canned in some way, but have no experience to back this up.
 
pollinator
Posts: 2009
Location: Canadian Prairies - Zone 3b
498
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
As much as I hate waste, if your gut instinct (based on weird smell, off taste, appearance) tells you it's dodgy, chuck it out. Don't worry, the trees will be pumping fresh sap very soon.
 
pollinator
Posts: 186
Location: zone 5-5
68
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've rolled/gathered the mold scum off the top before and used the syrup.
It kind of stuck together in a lump.
 
Catie George
gardener
Posts: 758
Location: Ontario - Currently in Zone 4b
461
dog foraging trees tiny house books bike bee
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Further thinking about canning - since maple syrup was traditionally a storage product.

I found an interesting suggested method. They recommend freezing, first, as the recommended method of storage. They warn canning isn't technically approved, but give suggestions for how to imitate the commercial process, which occurs at 85C. They warn heat can darken the maple syrup, changing it to a lower grade (I love darker maple syrup, so this didn't bug me).

See here:

https://www.healthycanning.com/maple-syrup-canning-or-freezing

I wonder if one could take those little 125mL canning jars/jam jars, and make individual maple syrup serving containers. Sterilize well, repack, heat treat for 5 min, etc... all the suggested steps in the article, which would get you about as good of a seal as the storebought stuff.

Anyway - possibly an option for future maple syrup purchases.
 
master steward
Posts: 7233
Location: USDA Zone 8a
2177
dog hunting food preservation cooking bee greening the desert
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I grew up scooping white mold off preserve and then enjoying the preserves.

If the mold can be successfully scooped off and the syrup smells good, then I would enjoy it.

I hate throwing away food but I am miles from the nearest medical facility so I don't want to take a chance on food poisoning.  Anything questionable gets thrown out.

Someone mentioned dehydrating the maple syrup.  I really like this idea so if I didn't have refrigeration or freezing available that is what I would do.

Another option would be canning the maple syrup into smaller container so it would be used up before it molds.
 
steward
Posts: 12147
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
3382
3
hunting trees books food preservation solar woodworking
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've had properly boiled down syrup mold in the fridge after a very long time (my syrup in someone else's house).  We drink it too fast to have that happen around here.

Outside a refrigerator, once opened, the mold is destined to occur eventually.  I'm not really sure I'd eat it.  I've heard it's fine but I've heard a lot of things are fine that I don't think are really fine.

Boiling it down further should make it more shelf stable.  It's just tricky to do so without ending up with some weird crystal science experiment.  If you're lucky and the "invert sugar" level is in the correct range, you can turn syrup into granulated brown sugar.  It's not easy but it's doable.  And then if you want to turn it back to syrup you can just add the right amount of water.  The issue is that if the invert sugar level is not correct, you'll make a hard caramel or other sugary lump instead of nice sugar.
 
I AM MIGHTY! Especially when I hold this tiny ad:
Solar Station Construction Plans - now FREE for a while
https://permies.com/t/138039/Solar-Station-Construction-Plans-FREE
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic