Maple syrup is the best thing you will want to buy from a gift store when you come for a visit to North America. As one might expect, genuine maple syrup comes in small bottles and is quite expensive. As an alternative, you can buy the artificially flavored kind that most Americans use, which is found in just about any supermarket. Some people prefer the latter, since it is sweeter and has more flavor.
I prefer to make my own homemade maple-flavored pancake syrup, since I use sugar (as opposed to corn syrup, which is the sweetener in most store bought ones). It is a simple, quick, and guaranteed recipe. Here it is what you need:
7 oz (200 g) brown sugar (dark or light)
7 oz (200 g ) granulated white sugar
1 cup ( 220 ml) water
Imitation maple flavour
Place all the sugar and water in a small sauce pan and turn the heat on medium high. Stir continually until all the sugar is dissolved.
Let it boil for 5-6 minutes until the foam disappears. Take it off from the heat and let it cool for 1-2 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon of maple flavour and stir it in. Have ready a 16.9 fluid oz (500 ml) bottle with a lid (ideally one like that in the picture, designed to be a syrup dispenser) and pour in the syrup hot. Put the lid on. It can be used immediately for pouring over pancakes, french toast, or even maple-glazed ham. The consistency is more like real maple syrup, as opposed to the kind made with corn syrup which is thicker.
It can be stored it for a month or two in the kitchen cabinet - but it is so good that it is unlikely to ever last that long!