homemade vanilla extract

I am a vanilla girl. Not to say I don’t adore chocolate…I just have a certain fondness for vanilla. I think it’s in how it is portrayed as such a “plain” flavor, yet it’s compounds produce a complexity all it’s own.

For instance,  vanilla beans as we know them in their pods come from a type of orchid that must be pollinated by hand.

If humans ceased to exist would vanilla also?

I doubt it- I am sure there is some area where nature does it.. but most of the vanilla beans we get as consumers were a-hem artificially pollinated. (ie; by hand)

Vanilla works really well in spicy dishes, believe it or not. And, even in wine.

Same way chocolate loves chile and cinnamon.

Trust me.

I finally got around to making my own vanilla extract, my friend Kira inspired me. Next is butter. She totally made me want to do that, too.

Vanilla is amazing. And it makes a great perfume. Remember back in the 1990’s when vanilla was hot? That was also around the same time everyone was “into” angels. Just after the “grunge” period….I think vanilla and angels were the ultimate counteraction of some marketers out there.

Everything was vanilla.

And people wore angels and decorated their homes with them…

mmm, vanilla angel cakes.

There was never a chocolate perfume rage….

at least not yet…

chocolate would have worked well with grunge, I think.

But I think that was when coffee got trendy.

Food trends.

I’m still waiting on sun tea to make a comeback.

As I said, I love vanilla and have a collection of it. Now I’m going to finally make it.

the actual vanilla beans look like tiny specs of dirt… can you see them?

while I made this, I also added to my vanilla sugar jar…. that was something I made back when angels and vanilla were hot…

you can see a recipe using that here (mmm, vanilla sugar tea cakes )that’s a EARLY post.

Homemade Vanilla Extract


Recipe: Homemade Vanilla Extract

Summary: how to make your own vanilla


  • 3 vanilla bean pods
  • 1 cup vodka


  1. Slice each vanilla bean lenghthwise down the center and place in an 8oz sterile glass jar with a tight fitting lid. (brown glass preferred) Top with vodka. Allow to age in a dark place for 8 weeks, shaking every few days. Top with more vodka as needed.

Cooking time (duration): 5

Microformatting by hRecipe.


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