Homemade vanilla extract can be higher quality than commercial, because you choose the beans, spirit, and infusion time. Any unflavoured spirit will work, such as rum, brandy, vodka, or whisky. Choose one that is not harsh and whose flavours would complement the vanilla. The proportions in this recipe are similar to a "2-fold" extract, so is stronger than most commercial extracts.
IngredientsFor 1 Litre
- 225 g extraction grade vanilla beans
- 950 g (1150 ml) 80-proof unflavoured spirit
- 50 g (50 ml) distilled water
- Chop beans coarsely with a knife, then transfer to a blender and pulse to chop more finely.
- Combine beans with the alcohol and water in a 1.5 L jar and seal.
- Allow to infuse 6 months. Shake gently once per day.
- Strain the alcohol and press as much liquid off the beans as possible.
- Filter again through a coffee filter.
- Transfer to a 1 L bottle and close.