Thursday, January 19, 2012

Homemade Vanilla Extract

Over the holidays I wanted to give a few of my baker coworkers something they would be able to use. I confess, this was actually not the original plan I had. I wanted to make hot chocolate and homemade marshmallows, which then I changed my mind to hot chocolate on a stick with homemade marshmallows. In the end, after a long weekend of baking, I changed my mind once again and decided on the vanilla extract.

I actually started to second guess my decisions the previous week, that's why ended up buying some bottles. I thought they were good to have, just in case I needed a last minute gift :).

Months ago, I started a batch of vanilla extract in a 8.5oz flask with used vanilla beans. Although not as dark as the ones I bought before, it has still had that wonderful vanilla-y smell of the extract. I made was enough to fill four 2-oz bottles of extract. I also added half a split vanilla bean into the bottle, so whenever they run out, they can fill with more rum and it would be the never ending supply! I tied these printable gift tags to them as a final touch.

I used rum in my extract since that's what I have on hand. Since we don't drink, most alcohol I have in the house is reserved for cooking and baking. If you have vodka or bourbon, you can used that as well!

Homemade Rum Vanilla Extract
a cathy's kitchen journey original
inspired by the web

  • 8 ounces rum or vodka
  • 3 whole vanilla beans, slit open (or several used beans)

  • 8.5 ounce (or larger) glass bottle that seals tightly

  1. For every 8 oz of liquid, add 3 whole vanilla beans, split lengthwise. Store in a dark area and shake every few days. Vanilla is ready to use in 6-8 weeks.
  2. I made mine with 5-6 used vanilla beans, then transferred them to 2-oz bottles after a few months, and added half a split vanilla bean to each bottle.
Yield: 8 ounces vanilla extract

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