Monday, October 26, 2009

Making your own extracts!

I've been making my own Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Extract for over a year. We also use store bought vanilla, but we prefer our own because we love seeing the little specks in the buttercream. While not as strong as store bought extract, it is very flavorful and less expensive to make than to buy it. I can buy an 8 ounce bottle of Tone's vanilla for less than $7.00. That is not bad at all, but homemade is cheaper! The Madagascar Bourbon vanilla extract sells for about $14-$20 for an 8 ounce bottle.

I buy my Madagascar Bourbon vanilla beans online on eBay. I can buy 25 Madagascar Bourbon vanilla beans for approximately $20.00 with shipping. At the store, I can buy 2 vanilla beans for $5.00. I can buy two pints of vodka for $7.00 and a glass jar for $2.97.

So, for an 8 ounce jar of Madagascar Bourbon Vanila extract, it costs me about $3.00 minus the cost of the jar.

Today, for the first time I made lemon extract. We'll see how that turns out!


5 vanilla beans split lengthwise
2 cups vodka
Glass jar.

Put split beans in jar (cut them in half if necessary to fit in jar).
Add Vodka. Give it a good shake. Store in cool, dark place for a month, shaking every couple of days. The vanilla extract will darken (although, maybe not as dark as store bought).

When half of the extract is gone, simply refill with vodka, shake every couple of days. The vanilla beans can stay in the jar and be reused unti it does not darken up the liquid anymore. Just add more vanilla beans.


2 large lemons. Peel the yellow part only, not the white pith. Place in glass jar.
Add a cup of vodka.

Shake and store in cool dry place for two weeks, shaking every couple of days.


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