Making Extracts

Because extracts are expensive to buy I am making my own. At the moment I am doing vanilla extract and lemon extract. The lemon one smells lovely, but the vanilla one still smells of Vodka. It's only been 1 week since I have stored these and I know you have to leave them for about 6 weeks in a cool dark place. Will these extracts turn to a syrup? I don't know, it's the first time I have followed instructions with this. Many thanks.

By Helen from UK

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April 5, 20100 found this helpful

You won't get a syrup unless you put sugar in them. That's what makes the syrup. This is an experiment and if it says 6 weeks, just wait and see, and if you don't like it, try something a bit different next time.

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April 5, 20100 found this helpful

Mine took every bit of 6 weeks to make a good vanilla. I used a pint of vodka and 2 or 3 beans. Make sure you slit the beans so the juice gets in and that seems to work better. I love the homemade vanilla. The only thing it doesn't work real well for is homemade ice cream. It doesn't freeze very well but makes a great shake.

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April 5, 20100 found this helpful

I made the vanilla extract last winter as Christmas gifts - my sisters love it. The homemade vanilla extract is so much better than the store bought one. My husband used it for homemade ice cream and it froze without any problems.

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April 5, 20100 found this helpful

My entire family makes our own vanilla extract to, we all pitch in and order our beans from a company in California. But we don't use vodka we use a very good brand of Bourbon. It comes out fantastic, but we let ours set for around 6- 8 weeks. We also use the whole bean for flavoring as well, just cut the bean lengthwise and scrap the beans out, there is nooo taste like it in homemade ice cream and cake mixes!!! Have fun with it, you will be so glad you did!!!

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April 6, 20100 found this helpful

Hi. Many thanks for the replies about making extracts, they have been very helpful. I still have another 5 weeks yet to see if the vodka smell goes away. Helen

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April 6, 20100 found this helpful

Hi Helen,

I cannot find your instructions for the making of this extract, could someone please direct me?

I, too, am from UK. There seems to be quite a few of us enjoying this great site. Lesley

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April 6, 20100 found this helpful

bjschrim51 (5), what do you mean by "scrape the beans out?"

PIKKA (454), Sugar? I'd like to have the info on this recipe. I didn't know you could make a syrup.

Thanks, Nelliebell

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April 6, 20100 found this helpful

I too make a lot of vanilla. bjschrim51: I live in California and am curious which company you get your beans from. I make my vanilla with vodka but am willing to experiment with bourbon. Which brand did you have such good results with? I love this site! Thanks

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April 7, 20100 found this helpful

Hi Popet,

I bought lovely Vanilla pods from ebay. They were lovely and moist not like the dried up ones bought at the supermarket I think they were £5.65p for 20 Madascan beans just use a clean jar split about 6 pods remove the seeds from them and put them into the jar, then cut the remaining pods up putting them also in the jar then just cover them with vodka. Put the lid on shake them well and store them in a cool dark place shaking them about twice a week.

I have also done this with lemon peel slivers without the pith. Same method I am only on the 2nd week of storing them so will let you know how it goes. You are right about this site it's the best one I have ever been on. Just like one great big family. Always someone there to help no matter what it is.

Helen xx

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