But, I haven't ventured across the border in a few years and I've noticed, with interest, the Pinterest boards on homemade extracts the past few holiday seasons. Since I'm a sucker for a new, creative, easy homemade gift idea-and some of the packaging and printable labels for these are so darn cute...I decided my Sunday afternoon project was to learn how to make this sweet treat!
Gathering the ingredients was definitely the hardest part of this project. When I say, "Easy Peasy," you really have to believe me on this one!
You don't want to be super cheap on these but you don't have to go overboard either. You can get Grade B vanilla beans on Ebay or Amazon and still have a wonderful extract as you have control over the type of bean used.
Mexican Vanilla Beans have a bold, smokey flavor.
Tahitian Vanilla Beans will lend to a more floral-sweet aroma.
Madagascar Vanilla Beans are rich and creamy
According to VanillaReview.com, you will need 8 whole vanilla beans to make one cup of extract. The best tasting vanilla has 1 bean per ounce of alcohol. This exceeds the minimum requirements of the FDA and will deliver a fine, quality vanilla.
Any variety of vanilla beans will make an excellent homemade vanilla extract or you can try to mix and match for an exotic baking blend!
Fun Homemade Vanilla Ideas
When making your vanilla extract, you can get those cute, little airplane sized bottles of vodka, rum or brandy and infuse 1 vanilla bean into each little bottle. Use the same method as above to prepare the vanilla bean.
This is a great way to give a unique gift that is inexpensive, yet useful!
Save the time and just order a Vanilla Extract InfusionCraft Kit or Homemade Kahlua Kit! Great gift idea!
I hate the thought of wasting these scrumptiously, delicious pieces of vanilla beans when the process of making your vanilla is complete.
Never fear...we can add some sugar and continue the vanilla bean lifespan!
This will be a simple process and is a great compliment to your homemade vanilla. After you've strained the liquid and have the bean pieces left over, simply dry them out for a couple of days and then toss them into a ziplock baggie with a cup or two of sugar. Shake and let sit for a few weeks before straining out the excess pieces. I like to use raw sugar but even table sugar is extra tasty with some vanilla flavoring!
Do you have a great recipe or tip about this? Share it!
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