Produced from the juices of plants such as raw sugar cane, trees such as maples or date palms, grains such as sorghum, corn, and rice, and a number of differernt fruits, Syrup is derived from a variety of different sources. The juice is extracted from various parts of the plant (tree trunks, stalks, kernel, etc.) and goes through a refining process where the juice is filtered in order to remove impurities such as mold, fibers and debris. The remaining contents continue being refined as they are boiled and then a refiltered, at which point the sugar is removed if desired and the thick concentrated mixture remaining becomes the Syrup. This mixture is then used as a base to produce common varieties of molasses and Syrups. There are numerous plants, trees and crops that produce Syrups, but for cooking, sweetening and garnishing, there are a group of common Syrups most often used for this purpose which include, molasses, grain Syrups (corn, rice, barley malt, and sorghum), sap Syrups (maple syrup, palm date Syrup), fruit Syrups, simple or sugar Syrup, treacle Syrup, and golden Syrup. In many restaurant or bakery kitchens, a base Syrup referred to as "Stock or Plain Syrup" consisting only of sugar and water is made and kept available for use when preparing recipes requiring a flavored Syrup. The stock Syrup is then enhanced with various flavors as needed such as vanilla or maple to create the desired taste for the various foods being prepared.
Syrups are often used to enhance foods by adding it to appetizers, beverages, breads, butter spreads, glazes, and vegetables. For appetizers, when using a feta or blue cheese as a spread on crackers or small toasted breads, add a small amount over the cheese and serve. For beverages, consider adding syrup as a flavoring when a vanilla milk shake is prepared. For breads, Syrup can be used on toasted or pan fried breads such as French toast or to sweeten and flavor biscuits, muffins, corn bread, polenta, pancakes, and waffles as they are served. For butter spreads, whisk or blend 1 stick of butter with 1 tablespoon of Syrup. The butter then can be used over roasted or baked carrots, various baked muffins, English muffins, and toasted breads. For glazes, apply Syrup with a brush to chicken, fish or pork prior to roasting or baking. For vegetables, carrots are the most often selected vegetable to sweeten and glaze with Syrup. However, Syrup can be added to other vegetables of choice and it may require some experimenting to determine which vegetables taste best for those being served.