It's easy to make your own vanilla extract. Submerge whole beans in good-quality vodka; in two weeks, you'll have a fragrant elixir that will grow stronger with time and last for years.

Note: If you frequently use extract, consider buying
Servings: Makes 4 ounces (24 tsp.)
  • 2 vanilla beans
  • 4 ounces good-quality vodka
  • Directions
    Place beans in a small, clean jar (such as the one they were sold in); beans may be folded in half but not split. Cover with vodka, and tightly seal jar.

    Allow to steep at least 2 weeks or up to several years. If infused for only 2 to 3 weeks, vanilla vodka can be used in cocktails (such as Vanilla-Mint Cordials). The longer it sits, the more concentrated the vanilla flavor becomes. To remove seeds for cooking use at any point, take beans out of jar, cut off one end, and pour out seeds; return empty pod to jar to continue steeping.


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