This stuff is incredible. I haven't yet made it, but my mother-in-law uses that very same recipe from Southern Living. She has shared some of the extract with me in recent months, and I was amazed at the difference in flavour. If you've never had the pleasure of home made extract, do yourself a favour this holiday season and try it out!
Thank you so much for this recipe. At last a way to get around the high cost of this very important ingredient. I think I may also try it with coconut flavored rum, sounds like a power house addition to baking.
Great recipe, I do it with a whole bottle of vodka and 8 to 10 split vanilla beans. I let it sit in a dark corner of the cupboard for 8 months to a year. I go through one vodka bottle of extract a year, so I remake one and always have one ready to be used when the current one is ready to run out. The beans are expensive, but the total cost must be less than buying all of that store bought extract, and this is so much better. You can take out the beans, after a year, dry them out and bury in a jar full of sugar for awhile, it makes the sugar taste good too, and you can use it in all sorts of things.
Vodka works for this, but I'd recommend using Everclear instead. It has a higher alcohol content and will produce a purer vanilla.
I use a whole bottle of vodka just like Barb. But I'm a cheap skate so I only put the empty pods in after I have scraped them out and used them in other cooking. I also buy my vanilla beans online from Herbies Spices, because they are really fresh. (www.gourmetshopper.com.au)
This is excellent stuff. It has a great intense flavour and is far superior to the imitation essence. It only requires patience as it really needs to sit for the two months to get the aroma of the vanilla bean into the vodka. I made 1 cup of vodka with 2 beans but will double the amount next time as it seems to be going fast!
Made some of this and oh boy did it rock! Flew threw it. Will have to keep a batch perpetually going. After having my own vanilla- I'll never go back to store bought.
I use this vanilla in so many recipes. I have 2 large bottles of it in my pantry. I will not buy any more vanilla extract at the store. I buy my vanilla beans online. They are much cheaper!
I used 5 vanilla beans and 1c of vodka and placed the mixture in a mason jar. I have made this extract twice now...once using organic Tahitian beans and another using organic Madagascar beans. Both extracts are to die for!!! I will never buy the commercial stuff ever again. It is so much easier just to make it yourself if you can find a good source for fresh, plump vanilla beans. My extracts have been sitting in my pantry for almost 9 months now and are a beautiful amber color...not to mention smell so heavenly!!!
Well, having read the reviews i have started two bottles going, one with vodka and the other with a small bottle of brandy. After three weeks both bottles are shaping up and smelling beautifully. I'm not going to rush either mix, this is something that should be allowed to develop quietly. Should be great for Christmas baking however!!!