Who is ready for CHRISTMAS!! I’m sure I just got a few groans while reading that. Last year, I made my own Vanilla Extract and Vanilla Sugar to use as Christmas gifts. If you are interested in doing this, now is the time to get started.
These two items are one of the simplest homemade gifts ever. There are only 2 ingredients for each recipe.
I bought my vanilla beans off of Amazon. The 1/2 pound for $30 is an amazing deal!
I made my extract in quart sized mason jars and used Rum as the alcohol. Vodka is the normal alcohol, but one of my friends who was going to be receiving this gift needed it to be gluten-free so I used Rum instead. I bought 3 Liters of Rum which fit perfectly into the 4 quart jars. For each jar, I added 12 vanilla beans which were sliced in half. Every once in a while I would take the jars out and shake them but for most of their 4 month life they sat in a cabinet just marinating.
When I removed the extract to package it into the gift bottles, I added 2-3 halves of a bean so that the extract could continue to get stronger.