A Simple Reduction Plan

There’s a saying in my hometown, at least this year, and that saying is “It’s always Moxie season in Maine at the Moxie Festival.”  Yep, that’s the theme of this year’s festival and we’ve even got T-shirts that say so.  You can buy them here.

Given that it’s always Moxie season here in Maine and after studying the wonderful and innovative recipes from last year’s Moxie Recipe Contest, I’m going to share recipes here on the blog from now until the recipes run out.  I’ll write some stories about the cooks who slogged away in their kitchens for weeks perfecting their creations.  I’ll try a few of the recipes myself.

Before I get too carried away, let’s start out with a basic tenet of cooking with Moxie: getting the distinctively different flavor into the recipe.  Some cooks use Moxie straight up, just pour it right into their recipe.  Other cooks make “simple syrup” or a reduction.  Julia Child defines a reduction (réduire), in Mastering the Art of French Cooking, “to boil down a liquid, reducing it in quantity, and concentrating its taste.  This is the most important step in saucemaking.”  Julia knows, and so does Maureen K., who submitted the following recipe:

Moxie Simple Syrup

“Moxie Syrup is Moxie Soda boiled down to a syrup. Take a 16 ounce bottle, pour it into the upper pan of a double boiler, and boil over medium heat until a syrup is formed. This will take a while, 40 – 45 minutes or so. Cook until the soda becomes the thickness of Maine maple syrup. Cool completely before using.”

I’m reducing and double-boiling as we speak and after my reduction is finished, I’m going to make another recipe Maureen submitted:

Moxie Cream Frosting

½ cup shortening
3 cups of powdered sugar
3 Tablespoons of MOXIE SYRUP
1 Teaspoon vanilla

Mix all the ingredients into a stiff but creamy texture.

I’ll bet I could use an immersion blender to mix the frosting before I put it between graham crackers for an afternoon snack.  What a perfect segue, because that’s the prize for each of the winners in the three categories of The Moxie Recipe Contest.

Prizes for Winning

The Moxie Recipe Contest will be held on Friday evening, July 11, 2014, at Chummy’s Restaurant in Lisbon Falls, Maine.  The judging begins at 5:00 p.m.

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2 Responses to A Simple Reduction Plan

  1. Slipper Sistah says:

    No one left a comment! Well that just can’t be. Thank you for taking the time to share with us the Moxie recipes and I hope that others who have found tasty ways to enjoy their Moxie will elaborate as well on your blog. Since first hearing about your connection with the Moxie festival last year and becoming involved with the cooking contest, Moxie has become one of my daily intakes. Cooking is something I’ve tried to avoid as much as possible and for this reason the ways I’ve come up with to incorporate Moxie in the picture are perhaps a little less complicated but allow the use of Moxie.

    Finding a bottle of Moxie to begin with was a bit of a challenge, the local grocery was out, so I asked at the cash to have them replenish the supply; happily now it’s a rare occasion that they’re out. They sell it in large bottles, and if I have the cash I’ll buy 2, 3 or 4 large bottles, and keep them under the cupboard so as to not run out. Do I drink Moxie, full strength? Very rarely, except when offered some in a can while visiting at a friend’s place. No, I use about half cup Moxie in a container that I place a powdered, electrolyte lemon flavored mix that I purchase from an on-line catalogue, and mix that with sixteen to eighteen ounces of water. It tastes like Ice tea, isn’t as sugary as most of those type beverages, it saves on lots of plastic 20 ounce soda bottles that I don’t buy any more. It would probably make a great beverage for parties etc…without too much trouble and at a reasonable price.

    Now I am waiting for some local bakery to make Moxie whoopie pies again, so I can purchase a supply to stash into the freezer. The plan is to take them out one at a time and add each to a half gallon of vanilla ice cream whenever I purchase one to make my version of Homemade Moxie whoopie Ice cream. We had a local dairy (bar) that was selling Whoopie Ice cream but this year they discontinued it. That was my favorite, so my brain came up with a plan. It worked great! Really looking forward to combining the two. How good would it be to have a Moxie whoopie ice cream available the weekend of the Moxie festival there in Lisbon Falls…Hint, Hint, Hint!

    Anyone who has the means to make that happen please do, you’ve got a ready buyer.

    • Sistah,

      Tomorrow, I’ll be discussing a “Jury of Your Moxie Peers” (or “Power to the Moxie People”). You will be able to find out how to apply your passion and pedigree as Moxie fan and aficionado to the cause. No cooking required. Stay tuned.

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