Sweet-lovers will, of course, want their maple in dessert form. Here's a simple, old-school recipe for mousse a l'erable that has been handed down through the generations by Montreal cook Aline Prud'homme's family. A word of caution: It is intensely sweet and best served in small portions—shot glasses or small ramekins work well.
1. In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the warm water and stir until diluted.
2. In a small saucepan, warm the maple syrup. Slowly add the gelatin to the maple syrup, stirring to combine thoroughly. Refrigerate for 15 to 20 minutes, until cool but not set.
3. With a hand mixer, whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Set aside 1/4 cup of whipped cream for garnish.
4. Using a spatula, gently but thoroughly fold the whipped cream into the cooled maple mixture.
5. Spoon the mousse into 2-ounce shot glasses and refrigerate at least 90 minutes or until set. Top with a spoonful of whipped cream and, if desired, a sprinkle of maple sugar and a drizzle of syrup.
Makes 6 to 8 servings
Adapted from Market Chronicles: Stories & Recipes from Montreal's Marche Jean-Talon, by Susan Semenak (Les Editions Cardinal, 2011)