I once met this guy who felt it was important to keep doing what he had seen his wife’s grandparents do, make syrup from cane. Sugarcane, grown on his property and on others, was loaded by hand onto a wooden wagon and pulled by a nearly modern tractor to the mill house.
The cane was placed into one end of a hand-cranked mill, and squeezed until the juice flowed out into a fifty-gallon barrel. There is a ten-gallon to one-gallon ration of cane juice to syrup, the farmer said. The juice is processed, through boiling and cooking, and reduced to its essence.
The essence of the cane grown in the field is syrup. From a solid to a liquid.
While the cane is cooking, it is skimmed. “There’s a lot of skimming,” he said. Some things ought not to go into the syrup.
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