Thursday, November 12, 2015

Homemade Vanilla

I am in the process of making about five and half gallons of homemade vanilla extract to package in the cutest 8 oz. amber bottles. These will be our wedding favors. Sorry to spoil the surprise for anyone who will be in attendance. Surprise!

I have just enough time left before the wedding (EXACTLY FOUR MONTHS TO THE DAY--EEEP!) to let these precious pods soak and turn into extract. 

It could not be easier--especially if your only making a small batch. All you need is alcohol--I chose vodka (real cheap vodka) and vanilla beans (extract grade Tahitian vanilla beans). I purchased my beans online at Vanilla Products USA. There is a "help me choose" button that is convenient if you're not sure which beans to buy. My beans arrived promptly and in vacuum sealed bags.

Considering the awkwardness that is Utah and its relationship with alcohol I opted to purchase my vodka in my home state of Texas when I was there in October. I felt a little strange going into the liquor store to buy two whole cases of vodka by myself so I asked my dad to go with me. Needless to say that felt just as weird. 

After reading several recipes I decided that I would use about 6-7 beans per 8 ounces. I used about 35-40 beans per 1.75 liter bottle. 

Here are some photos of the process:

Split the beans before soaking.
Leave in a cool, dry and dark place. i.e..a closet, pantry or a creepy basement if you've got one. I DO!
Most recipes say to let them sit for at least a month but the longer the better. You can replenish with more vodka and more beans as needed. 
This bottle is about a week old and it's already looking and smelling great!
I ordered the amber bottles and lids through this website.

Thanks for reading,

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