Vanilla Beans

Decorating By mommyle Updated 24 Mar 2008 , 1:51am by RoseCitySugarcraft

mommyle Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:09pm
post #1 of 12

I know this doesn't belong in this forum, but...

I need some help with vanilla beans. My dad (ILOVE him) bought me a pound of vanilla beans!!!! Now, I split them into several bunches (God knows I won't use them ALL AT ONCE!) and so now what??? Can I freeze them??? For how long???

And I looked in the recipes, but I couldn't find it, someone had posted what sounded like an AMAZING recipe for a vanilla bean filling. Can you please hook a girl up with it again???

Thanks so much for all your help in advance!!!!

11 replies
HerBoudoir Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:42pm
post #2 of 12

I would think that you can freeze them but to be fair, I have never bought any more than I absolutely needed, since they're expensive! I'm sure you would need to store them in an airtight container, out of direct light.

Some things I do with vanilla beans: I always start off by burying the bean in a cannister with 5 lbs of sugar to flavor the sugar. Leave it for a week and the sugar will have a wonderful vanilla aroma/flavor.

I'll then use the seeds from the bean by cutting in half lengthwise, and scraping the seeds out to add to a recipe in place of vanilla extract. "How much" depends on what you're making and how much vanilla flavor you want in it. If I'm going to the expense of using the bean instead of extract, I'm most likely making something where the primary flavor profile is vanilla (i.e. rather than playing a supporting role, like adding vanilla extract does in a chocolate cake).

Finally, I'll poach the remainder of the bean in milk or cream to make creme anglaise, pastry cream, ganache, or ice cream base.

You don't need a recipe that specifically calls for vanilla bean - you just replace the vanilla extract in any recipe with one of the above methods.

apetricek Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:55pm
post #3 of 12

Hi I make my own vanilla extract with beans. It is super easy, just takes some time (about a month, sometimes longer...) you just take the beans(you can split them if you want) put them in an air tight container, preferably glass ( I use old brown glass medicine bottles with screw on lids) fill it with either bourbon or vodka and let them soak! Be sure to keep it in a cool, dry, dark place...I just tuck it in the back of my cabinet. The beans will infuse the alcohol and there you go extract.! I use this in my buttercream, and everyone says mine is the best they have had. Good luck! thumbs_up.gif

ssunshine564 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 8:11pm
post #4 of 12

Thanks for the info apetricek, I would like to try that too.

cookieman Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 8:18pm
post #5 of 12

Just curious mommyle: how many actual vanilla beans are there in a pound?!?! Sounds like a lot! icon_surprised.gif

mommyle Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 8:21pm
post #6 of 12

OMG!!! I'm totally going to make my own extract now!!!! Thank you SO much!!!

And HerBoudoir, Thank you for the ideas!!! I feel some baking coming on!!! Yum!

ladyonzlake Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 8:23pm
post #7 of 12

I bought a pound of them on Ebay and I just have them in a ziplock bag in my pantry. You can also add a bean to your simply syrup. I made creme brulee with vanilla beans as well.

HerBoudoir Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 11:31am
post #8 of 12

Now this has possibilities...how much vanilla bean and how much booze?


Quote:
Originally Posted by apetricek

Hi I make my own vanilla extract with beans. It is super easy, just takes some time (about a month, sometimes longer...) you just take the beans(you can split them if you want) put them in an air tight container, preferably glass ( I use old brown glass medicine bottles with screw on lids) fill it with either bourbon or vodka and let them soak! Be sure to keep it in a cool, dry, dark place...I just tuck it in the back of my cabinet. The beans will infuse the alcohol and there you go extract.! I use this in my buttercream, and everyone says mine is the best they have had. Good luck! thumbs_up.gif


kwdonlon Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 12:22pm
post #9 of 12

I've used this tip from Cook's Illustrated:

Storing Vanilla Beans

Vanilla beans, expensive as they are, warrant proper storage when fresh to preserve their suppleness. To keep vanilla beans from drying out, Stephanie Perry Kipp of Anchorage, Alaska, stores them in a tall bottle (such as a clean caper bottle) filled with vanilla extract. The beans stay moist, full of flavor, and ready to use.

C-Lady Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 1:02pm
post #10 of 12

WOW! Thanks apetricek, I'm making my own extract today!

apetricek Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 11:40pm
post #11 of 12

Hi for all of you extractors out there....I use an 8 ounce container and fill it up with the alcohol, and I added about 3-4 beans per bottle. The longer you let it sit the better the extract will be. Mine has been "brewing" for about 6 months now, and is AWESOME! You can certainly use it before then, really once you can smell the vanilla over the alcohol it is ready, although caution....this is much stronger than your normal extracts, so I would suggest doing trial runs with it before you actually use it in anything, I know that is what I did. Good luck to everyone, hope you like it!

RoseCitySugarcraft Posted 24 Mar 2008 , 1:51am
post #12 of 12

Vanilla beans...MMmmmm...one of my favorites!

The Exec. Chef at work hooked me up with some too. And the first thing I did was divide the treasure into 4-bean bunches, and hauled out the ever-trusty Food Saver! Best investment I ever made in the kitchen (well, a CLOSE second to the prof. series KA).

If you don't have one, Reynolds Handi-Vac is an inexpensive alternative for small, infrequent jobs, too.

HTH,

Scott

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