A teaspoon of vanilla extract is a must have in any kitchen to give that slight something to the flavor of our favorite desserts. I decided to make my own vanilla extract at home when I realized I’d like to make homemade ice cream the next summer. As vanilla extract can be quite expensive, sometimes even difficult to purchase, and it’s really not rocket science to prepare it at home, it’s definitely worth your time.
Vanilla extract needs 5-6 weeks until it’s ready to be used but the vanilla beans can stay as long as 6 months in the alcohol. After this time you just need to filter it as the final vanilla extract – like a good wine – only gets more mature as time passes.
What you need to make your very own vanilla extract:
30 g dried vanilla fruits
250 ml vodka or rum*
1 dark glass bottle of 250 ml volume
sharp knife and cutting board
* Vodka is produced from grains, and although it’s distilled, it can still get contaminated with gluten in the production process. So in case of gluten sensitivity/allergy, etc., be careful to choose a gluten free vodka brand (there are some varieties on the market produced from potatoes) or rather a bottle of white rum, which is produced from sugar canes.
1. Make a cut on the side of the vanilla fruits, and scratch out the small fragrant beans from the inside:
2. Once done with this, cut the emptied fruits to approx. 1,5 cm slices. Now put the beans and the fruit slices in the dark glass bottle, pour in the vodka/rum, and don’t forget to sign the bottle with the date so later you when you made this.
3. Shake well and put it in a dark place e.g. kitchen cupboard, where you see it everyday s you won’t forget to shake it well again every day during the first week, and once weekly afterwards.
4. It’s going to have a nice dark color the next morning, and after 2 weeks, it will look something like this:
The fragrance? Heavenly…
So next time I refer to homemade vanilla extract, you’ll know what I mean. 🙂
Making vanilla extract is a nice past time activity for a rainy weekend afternoon, I hope you’ll also try and enjoy it!
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