Tuesday, January 10, 2012

a little vanilla

I LOVE MAKING... anything, baking, stitching. preserving and crafting.  You might say I have truly discovered my inner Martha Stewart (of sorts).  If I can't find it I will make it.

I made our Christmas napkin rings, some Spiced Persimmon Jam, an up cycled storage solution for all of our shoes and I have ordered some fabric to make our new "Pooch" a winter coat.  And, one thing you can't find in the supermarkets here is Vanilla Extract.

Vanilla Extract is a baking basic but it seems no one really bakes over here because there are plenty of Patisseries and Boulangeries that service those with a sweet tooth.  Thanks to my beautiful Mum I absolutely adore home baking... the process, the smell and finally the taste!  But who wants to use 'imitation' or 'vanilla flavoured' essence?  Not me!!!

So here it is, I have made my own Vanilla Extract / Essence to use in all my home baked goods.  All you need is Vodka and Vanilla Beans.  Just 100ml of Vodka per Vanilla Bean but I have put in an additional Vanilla Bean for extra flavour!

You can buy a glass test tube in the supermarket here with 3 Vanilla Beans for only 2.40CHF (not bad when they are about $5 each in Oz).  It's enough to last me 10 years of baking but it was super cheap to make and it smells amazing.

Oh, and the bottles are from a local Swiss soft drink...awesome!

This is a small test batch that I made about 3 weeks ako with a spare vanilla bean.  You can see the vodka drawing out the vanilla flavour.  All you need to do is give the bottle a shake once a week to keep it brewing.  You can longer smell the vodka, only the fragrant vanilla goodness!

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