Recipe: homemade vanilla extract
As I get ready for another shoot, I find myself short on time – again. Consider it your lucky day because this post will be short on words, so you can scroll the photos and see a quick and oh so easy recipe at the end! We have snow in the forecast. A cold front is moving in with winds and that rain/snow mixture and I realized if I didn’t get myself down to Boulder before the storm, I’d miss out on the lovely local blooms. Here is some of our local color in case you think I always travel elsewhere to get my photo on :) Colorado is starting to burst with color and it will continue through October.
there are many different colors and kinds of tulips on pearl street
flowering trees are going gangbusters at the public library
and let’s not forget the lilacs
You can see the rest of the photos on the photoblog: tulips and flowering trees and lilacs.
I had read so much about homemade vanilla extract on other blogs that I knew it was my destiny. When I ordered a few hundred vanilla beans and gave dozens away to friends and family, I still had about 80 left. I’ve been making my way through the stash, but a few months ago – right around the time I made all of that beloved Buddha’s Hand Citron Vodka – I had lots of cheap vodka on hand and remembered what was stored in my cupboard.
when you have a lot of vanilla beans
slice them open lengthwise
This recipe is so simple. Slice the beans, drown them in vodka, then forget about them for 2 months while they chill out in a cool and dark location. If you aren’t much of a planner, then this won’t work so well for you because of that whole waiting thing.
place them in jars
fill with cheap vodka
You’re supposed to give the bottles a shake every now and again. You can see the color seeping out and staining the vodka lovely shades of deep amber and brown. It’s so pretty you almost don’t want to give it a shake.
bedtime for vanilla beans – store in a cool, dark place
after a month (you’re suppose to shake them, but i liked the stratification here)
I had run out of my store-bought vanilla just the other day when I remembered my homemade vanilla in the office closet (hey – it’s cool and dark). It smells like a bouquet of flowers. Vanilla bean is magical like that. I thought it might taste like… vodka, but it tastes like vanilla flowers and the flavor it imparts is ten times better than any vanilla extract I’ve used before. Very nice. Easy. Peasy. And now I have LOTS of it!
vanilla better than you’ve ever known it
Homemade Vanilla Extract
3 whole vanilla beans per 8 oz. of vodka
clean glass bottle or jar
8 oz. cheap vodka
Split the vanilla beans lengthwise and place them in a clean glass bottle or jar. Fill the bottle with vodka. Seal the lid or top tightly and place in a dark and cool location for 2 months. Shake the bottle from time to time.
Source: Apparently the link I had in my post wasn’t clue enough for some of you guys! If you go to Saffron.com they have AMAZING deals on bulk vanilla bean purchases including organic vanilla beans. That’s where I got mine from.