Homemade Vanilla Extract

contributed by Melonie Reynolds, from Paula Deen

Ingredients
3 Madagascar Vanilla Beans (or Mexican Vanilla Beans)
3/4 cup Quality Vodka (I use Belvedere)
Glass jar w/ tight fitting lid (I use my empty EVOO containers *pretty/pours easier)

1.) Split leaving ends attached and scrape vanilla beans. Place scraped beans and seeds in glass jar.
2.) Warm vodka (I use a sauce pan)
3.) Pour Vodka over beans
4.) Cool completely
5.) Screw cap on tightly, and shake bottle vigorously.
6.) Place bottle in a cool, dark place. Shake bottle vigorously once a week for at least 2-3 months. Store for up to 1 year (the vanilla will darken as it ages).

Note:  When you start to get low, just add another vanilla bean and some more vodka to your batch.  I have been using this for recipe for 3 years. Its worth the effort to get started!  I have already made 3 spare bottles for Christmas gifts.

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