Make your own Vanilla Extract
So making your own vanilla extract... the real stuff, sound hard right, well not really the hardest two parts of the process are finding the vanilla bean, and patience. So we began our hunt in the down town area of Hilo, HI a day like many others, but we were in Hawaii, so while wandering the local shops of Hilo, we went looking for a store that sells the vanilla bean whole, we found Abundant Life foods and began to search, for a relatively small store we had a hard time finding vanilla bean, but after minutes of searching ... we ... finally found.... Vanilla Beans!!!!! But not just any vanilla beans, locally grown Hawaiian vanilla bean, but wait the jar was closed, and Joan attempted to open the jar, but it would not open... OH NO.. Now what will we do??? Thinking quickly Joan hands the jar to Brian and asks him to try... using all of his manly strength he twwwwiiiiiissssstttttts the cap and after several milliseconds he accomplishes the mighty feat, to which Joan (now suddenly in a floral print dress and with braided pig tails in her hair) says to Brian "My Hero" as she places her hands folded together on his shoulder and gently kisses him on the cheek, and bats her eyes. So now we have vanilla beans, we go back to the ship and jump ahead in time and place to a couple of weeks ago back at our house. Now the actual making of Vanilla Extract, start by getting a clean 8-10 oz jar or container, we got a jar that you would use for keeping olive oil in and dispensing, along with a cap for an air tight seal. We have been told the air tight seal is not necessary, but read on and determine what you think. Next you need three vanilla beans, well we got those in Hawaii but you can get them off the internet, or check some local food stores, if we find some in Chicago we will pass the store(s) along. Next you need 8-10 oz or light rum or vodka, we chose the light rum, and the last ingredient... time. So now to the making, take your vanilla beans and split them from about 1/2" from either end of the bean and put them in the jar or container. Next fill the jar or container with your choice of rum or vodka leaving enough room to stop off the end, now you don't have to seal this air tight, but this is alcohol and if you don't seal it well it will evaporate, so pretty close to air tight is good. Now the hard part you wait 6-8 weeks shaking the bottle occasionally and then you have vanilla extract.
The recipe in a simple to read format
1 - 8 to 10 oz Clean Jar or Container that can be sealed close to air tight
3 - Vanilla beans
8 to 10 oz Light Rum or Vodka
Take the Vanilla beans and slice it long ways from about 1/2" from each end.
Place the three sliced vanilla beans in the container.
Fill the container with the light rum or vodka close to the top of the container leaving enough room to seal the container with a minimal amount of air.
Place sealed container in a cool dark place for 6-8 weeks, then you have Vanilla Extract.
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