Maple syrup is delicious. It is a wonderful sugar replacement that has a bonus of added minerals. It can be rather expensive, so I save money in the long haul by purchasing large quantities at a time.
This is a case of learn from what I did wrong. Yes, I did this wrong. I bought a gallon of maple syrup. I put some of it in a smaller bottle for easy pour and I left the remaining syrup in my room temperature pantry. DO NOT DO THIS! When I refilled the smaller bottle, a puff escaped the container which looked like brown smoke.
This was mold spores that grew. These mold spores can cause life long breathing and lung disorders. So now I had 3/4 of a gallon of maple syrup that was bad. That is a lot of money to throw down the drain. Luckily, maple syrup can easily be re-pasteurized in your own home. Simply take the maple syrup and run it through a cheesecloth, and then boil it. This will sterilize the maple syrup and you can now use it.
When storing the excess maple syrup, store it in the freezer or in the fridge (as says the instructions on the side of the bottle, which I didn’t notice when I first bought maple syrup). I have mine stored in mason jars in the freezer, but transfer it to a smaller maple syrup container (which is kept in the refrigerator) for ease of pouring. With maple syrup’s high sugar content, it will not freeze solid in the freezer. This means you do not need to leave time to defrost your maple syrup if you run out of your syrup in the fridge.
I hope in sharing my mistake, I can prevent you from making it. And if you already did make it, I can help you fix it.
A bonus food safety tip I learned tonight from a friend: Never wash your meat (that includes your turkey!). Wash your hands. There is no way to wash off the bacteria from your turkey. The only safe was is to cook it thoroughly. (That means 165 degrees F, and check that at 3 places – the thickest place in the breast, the innermost part of the wing and the innermost part of the thigh). You can find these details and more at http://www.foodsafety.gov/. Following these tips can help prevent you from hosting a salmonella dance party at your dinner party.