I make real vanilla sugar regularly to use in baked goods, hot chocolate, tea, pancakes, oatmeal and candy making. It’s absolutely delicious in coffee or sprinkled on fresh fruit too. The delicate taste and aroma of real vanilla beans cannot be beat. It smells exotic and familiar at the same time.
Vanilla seems to remind people of simpler times and days gone by. Nostalgia is never a bad thing in this hectic, modern world. Knowing it’s hanging around my kitchen makes me happy.
Vanilla Sugar makes a special holiday gift too. Put it a glass mason jar tied with a colorful bow. Add a label. Viola, instant homemade gift.
Vanilla Sugar Recipe
Adapted from Jacques Pepin’s book Essential Pepin
- Take the tip of a knife and split the vanilla beans open lengthwise. Scrape the teeny tiny black seeds from the inside of the vanilla beans. Place the soft seeds and the split beans in a bowl with the sugar. Stir to combine. Store in an airtight container. You can use the sugar at this point or continue on to step two.
- Once the beans are dry (this may take a few weeks), take them out of the sugar. Then grind them up in a food processor or spice grinder to a fine powder and place the ground beans back into the sugar. Mix to combine. You don’t have to do this step, but it does add more delicious vanilla flavor to the sugar. Add more sugar and vanilla beans as needed. Keep a steady supply going by following this method.