Posts Tagged ‘vanilla extract’

We started our vanilla on Tuesday. It’s actually really easy to get going. There’s tutorials on the internet all over the place with pictures and proportions and everything. I looked a bunch of them and then kind of just mixed them together. Ivan bought me a vanilla bean in Hungary and brought it home for a coming home present to me. We wanted two beans, though, to make four ounces of vanilla so we had to find another one. We went to Central Market and they had several to choose from. Apparently Bourbon or Tahitian vanilla beans are the best to use. The cheapest we found was two beans for $7.50 or so, but looking online you can order them for a little over a dollar a bean. If I do this again I’m totally going to order my beans online.

The vodka I’ve already written about. That was a fun experience. Did you know you can spend over $100 for a liter and a half of russian vodka? It comes in a really tall, really cool bottle though. We bought the cheap kind and got 750 ml. We wanted a smaller bottle, but could only find the little individual drink bottles until we were on our way out and had already bought our bottle when we found the quick to-go shelf with a 450 ml or so bottle for cheaper. Oh well.

That night we put it all together. You slit the beans the long way and then cut them so they’re short enough to fit in the bottle and put them in a bottle with the pre-measured vodka in it. Then you let it sit for 4-8 weeks or so. They say ideally you let it sit for 6 months, but you can use it after 4 weeks or so. You shake it every day the first week and then every so often after that. It gets darker and stronger with time. The best part is that it’s reusable. When the bottle is half empty you just pour more vodka in and you’ve got more. I took this picture today, so it’s 4 days old. It’s already way darker.


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I found a blog post a couple months ago explaining how to make vanilla extract and got really excited about it. With everything that’s going on it’s taken me a couple months to get around to actually making the vanilla, but part of the problem was that vanilla uses vodka. My county is a (semi)dry county. This means they sell beer and wine, but not hard liquor. Anywhere in the county. We looked at grocery stores and liquor stores and asked the info desk at the grocery store where we were told to try going to the next county over. So we did.

So, being mormon, I’ve never been in a liquor store before. It was an interesting experience. I have never seen so many pretty bottles in my life. We both wanted to go, so we ended up taking the girls with us and my brother perked up when he heard we were going to a liquor store so we took him along too (we’re a little worried about him… j/k). We were quite a sight I’m sure walking into that store – Me, Ivan, my 19 year old brother and a toddler and an infant. They were very polite and helpful there, though and we eventually decided on a cheap plastic (sorry Nelson) travel bottle of vodka. So far it seems to be serving it’s purpose.

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