Vanilla Extract – Week 2

December 17, 2013

2 weeks ago I started a new batch of homemade vanilla extract. It’s starting to look a little better. Mostly as I have already surmised; more beans means more flavor. Oddly, there is one exception. My recipe #4, the double-strength extract, seems paler than recipe #3 (even similar to recipe #2). This seems so counter-intuitive that I will make a second jar of recipe #4, because that jar used exceptionally fat beans. When making my “control jar” I will use more average-sized beans (but still my super-sized 68-beans-per-pound).

After 2 weeks, it's looking a little cloudier

After 2 weeks, it’s looking a little cloudier

My Four Vanilla Extract Recipes for Round 2:

  1. 60% of the minimum FDA-strength: Based upon Chris Kimball’s 1993 recipe using super-size beans. I used 2 beans (1/2-ounce) and 8-oz of vodka. The cost is 25-cents per ounce of vanilla extract.
  2. 120% of the minimum FDA-strength: The recipe is slightly more potent than the minimum FDA-Strength. I used 1 ounce of beans and 8-oz of vodka, whereas the FDA requires only 0.83-oz beans per cup. The cost is 46-cents per ounce of vanilla extract.
  3. 166% of the minimum FDA-strength: I am hoping that this recipe gives me the big vanilla flavor that I am searching for. I used 6 beans weighing 1-3/8-ounces plus 7-1/3-oz vodka. The cost is 75-cents per ounce.
  4. 211% of the minimum FDA-strength: Gives me a full double-strength vanilla extract. The recipe used 7 beans weighing 1-3/4-oz plus 7-oz vodka. The cost is $1.03 per ounce.

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