Homemade Vanilla Extract : My Vanilla Extract Project

How wonderful is it when you discover a method to turn 'waste' into treasure. Sure, those vanilla pods seem empty and useless after scraping out their seeds within but hold your horses, you might just want to rethink.
Grab a bottle of flavourless vodka, an empty jam jar or glass container (reused too!) and your used vanilla pods. Yes doubt not, for all you need are 3 items to obtain your homemade vanilla extract. I've just started my homemade vanilla extract project 2 days ago. Today's day 3 and everything's looking good. Of course, not mentioning that you need to wait, 2 months at least, for the flavour to develop in the alcohol.

It'll be worth it, believe me.

You could also stick your used vanilla pods into a jar of sugar and after a month or so, you should have vanilla sugar as well! Wonderful isn't it, to have a teaspoon of extract in your yummy cakes and treats or a teaspoon of that vanilla infused sugar in your cuppa.

Homemade Vanilla Extract

A few notes :
* After googling around the internet prior to making my own vanilla extract, I've come to realised that there's no one hard and fast rule on the ratio of vanilla pods to amount of alcohol. However the reccomended ratio would be a cup of alcohol to 1 vanilla pod.

* Don't reuse the vanilla pods that have been seeped in custard or milk.

 * You could use new vanilla pods, just scrape out the seeds and put them inside the container as well. This will hasten up the process.

* To hasten up the process : Use a higher ratio of vanilla beans to amount of alcohol.

* To obtain a stronger extract : Use an alcohol with a higher percentage of alcoholic content.

1 cup of flavourless vodka (I asked my dad to get it from the duty-free store at the airport, it's cheaper!) (I used 400ml to fill up my jam jar)
1 used vanilla pod (I used 3)
1 glass container/bottle
1 funnel (optional but tremendously helpful if you're using a glass bottle with a small neck)

1. Sterilise your glass container/bottle by placing it in a pot of water and bringing it up to a boil. Let it dry and cool then use.

2 . Pour a cup of the alcohol into your glass container and place your vanilla pods inside. Close the lid tightly and shake.

3. Place it in a cool corner in your house and shake it once a week or daily for 8-10 weeks and there you have it, your first homemade vanilla extract.


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