What Kind Of Pure Vanilla Extract Do You Like?

Baking By TracyLH Updated 6 Nov 2008 , 1:27am by 7yyrt

bettinashoe Posted 15 Sep 2008 , 9:47am
post #61 of 100

Homemade vanilla as Christmas gifts is a wonderful idea, darcat. I may have to do the same thing. What type of bottles are you planning to use for your gift packages of vanilla?

darcat Posted 15 Sep 2008 , 12:35pm
post #62 of 100

well bettin thats the only thing I havnt figured out yet lol. I'm going to check out the dollar stores in my area and if I cant find anything I may just go with the very small mason jars. The only thing is that the vanilla is supposed to be stored in a dark colored bottle but I'm thinking that if I use the small mason jars I can perhaps put a nice piece of material around it and since vanilla is stored in a cupboard it wouldnt get any light anyhow. If you come up with a better idea let me know please.

TracyLH Posted 15 Sep 2008 , 2:04pm
post #63 of 100

Thanks for the info Darcat! I'd be curious to see if yours is a deep shade, but I am guessing it will be. If you remember, please tell us how it turns out and thanks again for the links!

bettinashoe Posted 15 Sep 2008 , 5:26pm
post #64 of 100

I haven't given it much thought, darcat. I was hoping, since you were further into the process than I, that you would do my thinking for me! I always save decorative balsamic vinegar bottle just for things like this but they are clear so it probably wouldn't be a good idea to use them for the vanilla. Although the vanilla you purchase in the store is in clear bottles. So wrapping them in cloth or putting them in a cloth bag would probably work. See, you made me think after all.


darcat Posted 15 Sep 2008 , 5:29pm
post #65 of 100

lol Bettin I should recieve my beans by the end of the month so I have till then to figure it out. I'll let you know how it all comes together.

jessfmaldonado Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 2:59pm
post #66 of 100

Wow I wasnt getting notified about this thread, until Tracy posted it on another one. I'm glad I was able to help others with the price at www.Surfasonline.com. That vanilla is the best, in taste and price. Other than the one I make myself. The only thing is, now that everyone has been ordering it, they are on backorder icon_cry.gificon_cry.gif !!! LOL. They never were before, so now I have to wait a few weeks to get mine. Thats okay because I love it so much, I will wait! lol. Try the vanilla bean paste as well!!! I use it in my SMBC for the vanilla beans and it is sooooo yummy!!!! It also is such a great price!!! https://www.surfasonline.com/productlines/186.cfm?startrow=17

The vanilla powder can be used when you want a whiter BC too!!

Jessica icon_smile.gif

bakenboi29 Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 3:17pm
post #67 of 100

In the past I used Neilsen-Massey vanilla andother brands, but now I make my own using prime madagascar vanilla beans with vodka. I've been doing this for a few years now. Comes out excellent and is much stronger than store bought.

TracyLH Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 3:30pm
post #68 of 100

bakinboi29 - Where do you get your beans and what kind of vodka do you recommend? Thanks!

pianocat Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 3:32pm
post #69 of 100

I make my own using Madagascar beans and vodka. I started mine in June-it is wonderful. This is all I use. For the color question-a little bight white or Lilac color gel takes care of that.

darcat Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 3:39pm
post #70 of 100

I bought my beans on ebay and got a really great price along with free shipping. Just made my vanilla yesterday using 40pct vodka. Now all I have to do is wait icon_rolleyes.gif lol

jessfmaldonado Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 3:41pm
post #71 of 100

Here is where I get my beans from:

I get a half pound for 29.50, and these are the plumpest beans I have ever found. Really good price too!!! About 40 beans!!!!!!!!! I love them, and the flavor is fantastic!!!
Here is a review from vanillareview.com on silvercloudestates. You can also check for other vendor reviews on that same website. I love that website!!!


TracyLH Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 3:47pm
post #72 of 100

You all are awesome! (borrowing a word from my 12 year old!) It looks like I will have to give this a try! Pianocat - thanks for the bright white idea. Does that make your following colors a bit more pastel? Just curious.

Any recommendations on brand of Vodka?

nickshalfpint Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 3:47pm
post #73 of 100

jessfmaldonado..........How do you store the vanilla beans. How long do they keep? That's so cheap for that many beans, but It would take a while to use that many. At the store where I get my vanilla beans it is $8 for 1 sometimes 2 beans =(

darcat Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 3:58pm
post #74 of 100

This site will help anyone wanting to try their hand at making their own vanilla. It gives tons of information about buying and storing the beans as well as a step by step guide on how to make the extract


jessfmaldonado Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 4:02pm
post #75 of 100
Originally Posted by nickshalfpint

jessfmaldonado..........How do you store the vanilla beans. How long do they keep? That's so cheap for that many beans, but It would take a while to use that many. At the store where I get my vanilla beans it is $8 for 1 sometimes 2 beans =(

Here is what I do: Right from the website:

Storing Your Vanilla Beans

Stored properly, your vanilla beans from Silver Cloud should remain fresh and pliable for a year or more. After removing the beans from the vacuum sealed pack store them in an airtight container. The temperature should be relatively constant. Never refrigerate or freeze your beans, they will dry out and may develop mold. Open the container every few weeks and enjoy the aroma. This will let the air circulate a bit, which helps prolong the shelf life. Over time your beans might develop an edible crystal frost. This is natural vanillin, which gives vanilla its characteristic flavor.

bettinashoe Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 10:15pm
post #76 of 100

pianocat, do you add the color to the entire container of vanilla or just to the individual recipes as you are using the vanilla?

darcat Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 10:25pm
post #77 of 100

pianocat why would you want to color your vanilla? It's supposed to be brown. Am I not reading your post right? Are you trying to make it white?

jessfmaldonado Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 10:32pm
post #78 of 100
Originally Posted by darcat

pianocat why would you want to color your vanilla? It's supposed to be brown. Am I not reading your post right? Are you trying to make it white?

I think pianocat is talking about making bc/fondant white instead of the off-white color you get from the pure vanilla.

Jessica icon_smile.gif

bakenboi29 Posted 30 Sep 2008 , 11:27pm
post #79 of 100

TracyLH, I get my beans usually from Ebay which are priced pretty good for vanilla beans and I use Skol Vodka. It's cheap but it does the job. For the vanilla beans, just type in vanilla beans and click search. You should get a bunch of listings. Hope this helps. icon_smile.gif

darcat Posted 1 Oct 2008 , 12:11am
post #80 of 100

tks jess thats what I thought she meant. That she then uses the brite white to get rid of the color in her fondant or frosting.

tricia Posted 1 Oct 2008 , 2:18am
post #81 of 100

I have a friend that goes to Mexico every year and he always brings back cases of vanilla (clear and dark). They are 31.79 fl.oz. for $4 !! They last a long time! I always get 2 bottles of clear and 1 of dark. By the time he goes back to Mexico I am ready for another bottle! It is called "LA VENCEDORA" VANILLA PURA.
He said the clear is harder to get, I don't know why.
It is really the best vanilla ever! I have looked in some of the mexican shops here, but never find it!

ceshell Posted 1 Oct 2008 , 4:26am
post #82 of 100

Here's a link to some info on that "unbelievably cheap" Mexican vanilla. As I think has been stated in PP, you can surely get good vanilla made from Mexican vanilla beans, however getting vanilla FROM Mexico itself should be something done with caution.

From the gourmetsleuth website: "Most of the vanilla extracts that come to the US from Mexico are synthetic. The best way to determine quality is price. If you are offered a large bottle for a cheap price it is most assuredly a synthetic product. Also, real vanilla is not "clear". No matter what the label may tell you if it is clear it is synthetic." http://www.gourmetsleuth.com/vanilla.htm

Another good site, including the history of vanilla in Mexico http://www.vanilla.com/html/facts-mexican.html

If you are buying Mexican vanilla please be safe! As has been discussed previously, in small amounts coumarin might not be toxic to YOU but it might cause an adverse reaction in someone you are baking for who might have a health condition.

BTW I just Googled LA VENCEDORA vanilla and according to the importer's website it IS FDA approved and courmarin-free thumbs_up.gif http://www.leosimports.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=398

I would be inclined to believe that if it's been shipped here legally and "above ground" i.e. subject to FDA regulations it's probably safe, but advance research is a good thing!

eta a list of Mexican vanilla manufacturers that have been flagged by the FDA to prohibit importation into the US due to coumarin : http://www.fda.gov/ora/fiars/ora_import_ia2807.html

TracyLH Posted 1 Oct 2008 , 11:55am
post #83 of 100

Thanks Jessica and bakenboi29 for the info on getting the beans, etc.!

pianocat Posted 1 Oct 2008 , 12:48pm
post #84 of 100

Sorry I didn't explain that very well. Add it to your bc/fondant recipe. It will cancel the yellow/off white color you get when using real vanilla. And no, it doesn't make the colors you add pastel just cancels the yellow to give you a more white base to work with.

TracyLH Posted 1 Oct 2008 , 12:54pm
post #85 of 100

Thanks, Cathy! It sounds like a go and a great alternative to 'clear vanilla extract' that isn't vanilla extract at all.

bettinashoe Posted 4 Oct 2008 , 9:28pm
post #86 of 100

Thanks everyone. Now I'm hooked. I've been cleaning out my unique looking balsamic vinegar and olive oil bottles that I just couldn't bear to throw out. I'm going to be making vanilla!!!! Or else I'll get the vodka bottle open and forget what I was planning on doing with it. (Really, I don't drink at all, but I thought it was funny!)

darcat Posted 26 Oct 2008 , 2:19am
post #87 of 100

lol bettinashoe
Here's my vanilla that has been fermenting since sept 20. It's still in the vodka bottle lol but will wait till its completely ready before I re bottle it. I also made 2 small bottles as gifts I put the vanilla in the small mason jars and then decorated the jars. My sister and sister in law were quite impressed and glad to have it. I will be able to use it for my christmas baking.

SueW Posted 26 Oct 2008 , 3:34am
post #88 of 100

I haven't read the whole post so if someone already mentioned this I apologize. If you have a Home Goods near you they sell the NM vanilla extract that is in Williams Sonoma! I buy it all the time, the bottle is the same color as when you buy it in WS but it just says NM vanilla it doesn't mention William sonoma on the bottle but who cares about that icon_lol.gif

I must admit I have never notices a taste difference in any Vanilla Extract icon_confused.gif I guess I don't have a sophisticated palate icon_smile.gif I have tried Costco, NM, McCormick, Wilton they all taste the same to me icon_confused.gif

ILE Posted 26 Oct 2008 , 4:07am
post #89 of 100

txkat where in new jersey i live in nj

7yyrt Posted 26 Oct 2008 , 5:29pm
post #90 of 100

To those of you who use the bourbon vanilla:
Does that taste come through in the baked goods? I had a big bottle, and it just reeked of bourbon - no smell of vanilla at all, so I dumped it down the drain. (I bake for someone who is very concerned about alcohol and alcohol flavoring.)
Could I have used it after all?

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