From the Test Kitchen: Maple Sugar

Max Iattoni

It's not every day that a new sugar comes into your life. So when it does happen, it's a pretty special moment. This week in the SAVEUR Test Kitchen we've been playing around with maple sugar, and if you've never tried it — now's your chance. First used by Native Americans to add flavor to all kinds of sweet and savory foods, the golden granules are made from the pure sap of sugar maple trees, which is dried and then crystallized. You can buy it either in a solid block, which must be grated before use, or a fine powder.

The sugar is intense, so use it where a deep maple flavor is desired, rather than as a scatter-gun all purpose sweetener. For a quick hit, try it out on a serving of oatmeal, sprinkled on a slice of toast or on top of caramel ice cream. It can also be used to give an added dimension to muffins and cookies and for making granola. Or for a hint of sweet and savory scatter it on top of a baked potato with butter and salt. It's available at farmers markets where maple syrup is sold, or at Whole Foods (where we got ours), sold under the Highland Sugarworks brand.