Maple Bake-off in Fleischmanns

Fleischmanns — Spring in the Catskills is often announced by the trill of returning birds and sap running from maple trees immediately followed by the sweet amber signature of the mountains, pure maple syrup.

So what happens when you mix that sweet succulent syrup with culinary prowess—the first annual Fleischmanns First Maple Bake-Off to be held on Saturday, March 24 during the inaugural Maple Festival weekend in Fleischmanns. Whether you are a seasoned baker or new to the art of mixing flour, sugar and flavors, Fleischmanns First is encouraging everyone to toss their creativity into the Mixmaster with some sugar, butter, flour and a good strong dose of our region’s richest recourse—maple syrup.

Whether you are a seasoned baker or new to the art of mixing flour, sugar and flavors, Fleischmanns First is encouraging everyone to toss their creativity into the Mixmaster with some sugar, butter, flour and a good strong dose of our region’s richest recourse—maple syrup.

The bake-off is designed to reflect the traditional agricultural competitions of the county fairs that have dappled rural geography since the early part of the 19th century. And, as Fleischmanns First invites you to celebrate spring in true country form, they are also creating a “pop-up” Grange Hall in the former telephone building on Main Street for a tastings and judging cafe. This marriage of contemporary “pop-up” downtown development with more traditional community sense of place all comes to life from 4 to 6 p.m. on March 24 and is one of several planned events for the Fleischmanns Maple Festival Weekend.

There is no entry fee for the bake off and you can obtain a registration form on www.markproject.org or by calling 586-3500. Ribbon award categories include traditional, gluten-free, low fat and baked goods made by intergenerational baking teams.

The café tasting and judging at the Café and Pop-Up Grange is a fund-raiser for Fleischmanns First and is open to the public. Tickets are $15 and include maple-baked goods, maple walnut ice cream, courtesy of the Rotary Club of Pine Hill and Fleischmanns, and the opportunity to bid for the winning maple inspired indulgences. Also included with your ticket are coffee, tea, hot maple toddies, fiddle and guitar music and an opportunity to gather and celebrate community, all in that unifying Grange environment.

It all begins with the crowning of the Maple Princess on the steps of the historic Skene Memorial Library on Friday afternoon.

The celebration continues on Saturday with the Fleischmanns Fire Department’s Maple Glazed Chicken Barbecue beginning at 11 a.m. and continuing until sold out followed by the Maple Bake-Off Cafe at the “Pop up” Grange Hall on Main Street from 4 to 6 p.m. On Sunday from 8 to 11 a.m., the second annual Maple Pancake Breakfast at the Fleischmanns Community Church wraps up the weekend. Tickets for the breakfast are $6 for adults, $4 for children.
For information, to obtain the bake off guidelines and an entry form please see markproject.org or 586-3500.