As I have posted pictures of my little bottles of vanilla goodness this week I have gotten so many responses of people being simply amazed. I mean it truly is amazing that you can make your own extracts, but...when you all see how easy this is I promise you will be less impressed.
As I have fallen in love with food and spending time in the kitchen there is one thing I have learned time and time again...just try. So much of what we label as impressive is really easy if you just get in the kitchen, roll your sleeves up, and try. Yes you will fail, I have had my flops of recipes, but trying is half the fun. When you finally get a recipe to where you want it, that point where it went from terrible, to eh...okay...to oh my goodness I want to sing and dance this is so good - the trying is worth it!
So the next time you see a recipe on my instagram and think...geez that looks amazing, I could never make food like that Rachel girl...GO TRY IT! I dare you. Think of it as an adventure and just see where it takes you! Okay, I will stop preaching.
Vanilla, extract to be specific. It is in everything we bake, and this time of year we can do A LOT of baking. I had a church friend that said she gave bottles of vanilla extract as gifts one year and knew I wanted to try it out. So I did.
This is not a quick recipe, and requires a lot of patience and planning ahead. (6 weeks -2 months ahead). Making the extract is easy but it must have time to sit and become extract so if you want to give this as gifts you need to wait a minimum of 4 weeks before using and really ideally 2 months!
Vanilla Beans (I used Madagascar and bourbon vanilla beans that I purchased
one large bottle of Vodka (any name brand will work, but you dont want to buy the cheapest thing you can find!)
Boston Bottles (I bought a pack of 12 4 oz bottles
Take vanilla beans and slice in half and down the middle. Place 2 vanilla beans (or 4 halves) in your bottle. Top with vodka. Seal and let sit in a dark and cool place for 6 weeks to 2 months.
Enjoy while baking. Or squeeze the vanilla bean pods to use seeds in homemade ice cream, sauces, glazes and other things for a distinctly gourmet vanilla flavor (and all those pretty black specks!)
Also you can use whiskey or rum if you have that instead of vodka. The flavor profile is different and I really feel a rum pairs great with the bourbon vanilla beans...but to each his own!
See!!! I told you it was so simple. So please, for my sake, tell me you will go try it! Be impressed with yourself then spread on the news that homemade extract is easy, more flavorful and cost efficient! YAY!
Also, you can make cute little labels like I did to make your bottles all professional and gift worthy! I just made these in Photoshop really quickly but you could find a printable online or make your own!
So what do you think? Are you gonna try to make it? :)