How to use Natural Vanilla Beans
Baking with Vanilla Beans
- Using Seeds by splitting the Pod
If you wish to use the vanilla bean in a batter for a cake or for cookies, you have to open the vanilla pod and take out the seeds. You can then add the seeds to the batter to infuse it with a natural vanilla flavor. To split the pod, lay the vanilla pod on top of a clean and dry cutting board. Hold the bean from the curved tip from your non-dominant hand while a sharp knife will remain on your dominant hand. Split the pod with a long, vertical stroke through the middle of the bean. Cut only into the center of the pod, not through it completely because single vanilla bean is equal to three tablespoons of vanilla extract and the amount of seeds you need for your work is enough for a moment. If you wish to use the whole bean you can split it fully and take out all seeds at once. To scrape out the seeds use the side of the knife or a small spoon to dig out the seeds.
If you have a recipe for a cake, cookies, or any food that requires vanilla extract, you can use these vanilla seeds instead of vanilla extract. Add vanilla seeds when you cream the butter in the recipe as this will ensure the seeds are well incorporated into the batter.
You can also mix vanilla seeds into sugar, infusing the sugar with vanilla. Rubbing the vanilla seeds into the sugar will release the aroma of the vanilla and infuse the sugar with a natural vanilla taste. Then these vanilla infused sugar can be used when sugar is required in any recipe.
Also keep in mind to open the vanilla bean right before you wish to use them in cooking or baking.
- Flavoring using Vanilla Beans
For the baking recipes that contains milk, you can use vanilla pod to milk and heat up the milk in a saucepan or a suitable pan over medium high heat for some time hence it can be used in puddings, custards, and other milk based recipes
Also you can drink fresh milk incorporated with vanilla flavor by adding a small amount of vanilla seeds into the hot milk and keeping it for few minutes to blend the flavor into the milk.
Placing a split vanilla bean or a whole vanilla bean in your sugar container will provide your vanilla flavored sugar. You can use vanilla flavored sugar into your tea, coffee or anything that needs sugar.
If you need a vanilla infused coffee for your day today routine, place a dry vanilla bean in your coffee container for few weeks. Over the time, your coffee beans will become infused with vanilla flavor and will add a great taste to your morning coffee.
- Storing Vanilla Beans
Store vanilla beans in a sealed container in a store it in a cool, dark place in your kitchen straight after it has been taken out from the vacuum pack or the product packaging. Covering the beans from a aluminum foil will be much safer. Do not store vanilla beans in refrigerator or freezer, as these spots are too cold for the bean and can in dry it out quickly.