What you need:
A canning jar with a lid
Two cups of vodka (Check out Barnivore to find vegan vodka options)
5 vanilla bean pods
What you do:
- Split your vanilla bean pods in half (lengthwise).
- Scrape the beans from inside the pods.
- Place the beans and pods in the mason jar (you may need to cut the pods to make them fit).
- Pour the vodka into the jar (making sure that the pods are immersed).
- Close the jar, give it a good shake, and then place it in a dry, dark spot (like a pantry or cupboard).
- Shake it up every once in a while as you allow it to age for about six to eight weeks before use.
When you are ready to use your homemade vanilla extract, you can either strain it through cheesecloth and bottle the liquid, or you can leave the concoction as is in the mason jar. If you keep the liquid and vanilla beans together in the jar, you can continue to top off the jar with vodka and add any vanilla pod scraps you have from other recipes to ensure that you always have DIY vanilla extract on hand.
If you regularly use vanilla beans in other recipes, or bought some to try out making vegan vanilla sugar, you will likely have some left over that you can use for this vanilla extract recipe. If not, you can often purchase them in the bulk spices section of your local natural foods store or can order vanilla beans online.