How To Make Use Of Left Over Vanilla Beans

Vanilla Liqueur

This is a delicious recipe for homemade vanilla liqueur. You could of course just buy vanilla liqueur, but do you really want that artificial flavor and cloying sweetness, when it is so easy to make your own?

Vanilla Liqueur:
3 Vanilla Beans
320 ml of Wray & Nephew White Overproof Rum 63%
365 ml of Water
50 g of Cane Sugar
(Yields 500 ml of liqueur)

When for instance you are preparing a dessert like Pana Cotta, Crème Brulée or ice cream, you need vanilla pots. You cut the bean open to get at the pulp inside, but what to do with them after that?

Simple, just wash off any sweet remains of your dessert and throw it in a jar or container of some sort. Add 100 – 200 ml of high-proof alcohol per vanilla pod and let sit for at least two to four weeks. Weekly agitating helps speeding up the infusion-process. After a few weeks your essence will turn dark brown and your pod will become a bit pale. The color comes from the skin of the vanilla bean and that is the sign that your essence is ready.

Just add water to your taste. I would suggest 365 ml of water per liter, if you are using rum with 63% alcohol, like I did. The next and last thing to add is sugar. I used pure cane sugar, which did not overpower the vanilla flavor. Add 100 g of sugar to every 1000 ml of your essence, otherwise you are technically not allowed to call it a liqueur in Europe. After that you just have to bottle your liqueur in clean boiled bottles. I made mine over a year ago and it still keeps fresh.

You can buy a bottle as shown in the picture here.

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