Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Hurry Up and Wait, or, Homemade Vanilla Extract

Inspired by Clotilde at Chocolate and Zucchini and Katie at Salt and Chocolate, I started my own batch of vanilla extract on Sunday! I took the simplest possible route: 3 vanilla beans, split open and halved, tucked in a carefully cleaned jar and covered with about a cup and a quarter of vodka. Shake once a week or so, and store in a dark cupboard. Alas, it'll be about two months before I can use it, but I'm excited for July!

If you're interested in trying DIY vanilla extract, and you're in the Boston area, might I suggest Christina's spice shop in Inman Square, Cambridge? I got five beans for $10. I'm sure they're not the the finest beans money can buy, but they're plump enough for me.


  1. Fun! I've never done this, guess because I find it hard to part with the precious vanilla beans, but it's really a great way to preserve/stretch them.
    Looking forward to hearing how it came out!

  2. Second the vote from Christina's. Pretty fine selection of dried chilies. And the store is attached to the best ice cream shop in Boston, if not the world. Their kulfi (or kulfi-style ice cream? whatever) is the best use of cardamom EVAR.

  3. I started making some too in an old bottle of vodka. I need to add more vanilla bean pods though. There's only 1 in there right now!

  4. I love your site. Go to amazon for vanilla beans. Great prices.