Vanilla or herb sugar is one of my top choices to sweeten a cup of fresh brewed tea or tisane. Also wonderful in baked goods. The flavor of the sugar improves the longer it sits, and you can reuse the vanilla beans (or hard spices) to make more flavored sugar for months on end. Herb sugar is a wonderful use for sweet herbs such as lemon verbena, rose geranium, lavender or mints. Also lovely made with cardamom pods, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, star anise, vanilla beans, ginger root, orange peel, rosemary, sage, summer or winter savory, tarragon or thyme. For the hard spices, just put them in whole, or slice vanilla beans lengthwise to expose the fragrant seeds. Makes about 2 cups. Enjoy! Tip: Makes a lovely gift in a jar, tied with a pretty ribbon and herb sprig tucked in! Attach a recipe card, et voila!
- Gently bruise the herbs with a mortar to bring out their aromatic oils, then mix them with the sugar and citrus zest.
- Put the herbs and sugar in a jar and cover tightly.
- For the next two weeks, give the sugar a shake or stir every few days to spread the aromatic oils around and to break up any clumps.
- After 2 weeks, the sugar will be infused with the herb's flavor.
- Strain the sugar, discard the herbs and zest (you can reuse the vanilla bean or hard spices), and store, tightly covered in a cool and dry place. Will keep for up to one year.
- Makes a lovely gift in a jar, tied with a ribbon and herb sprig tucked in! Attach a recipe card, et voila!