I have always wanted to try recipes using vanilla beans, but the fact is they are so expensive I couldn't see experimenting with them. I found on eBay that I can order a pound of vanilla beans for a total of around $30! I was super excited and placed my order immediately! My first recipe to try:
Homemade Vanilla Extract
This is a process so I will be posting updated photos every week.
You will need:
A clean jar
1 cup vodka
3 vanilla beans
Place the jar in the kitchen sink and pour boiling water in to the jar. Let it sit for a few minutes to sterilize the inside of the jar. Carefully pour the hot water out.
Using a knife, slice the vanilla beans length wise and if the jar is very short cut them in half as well. Then place the beans in the jar. Pour the vodka over the beans and screw the lid on tight. I give the jar a little shake. Place the jar in a cool, dark place (like the back of your pantry) for 8 weeks, giving the jar a shake once a week. The longer it sits the darker the extract will get.
* When you use about 20% of the extract, replace the vodka back to the original level. As you use vanilla beans in other recipes place the used beans in the extract jar, removing old beans if the jar gets too crowded. This way you'll never run out!
More photos to come!!