Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Pure Vanilla Extract...Works For Me Wednesday

When I first started baking, I didn't pay much attention to the vanilla extract I was using. I just grabbed the red and white bottle my mom always used.

Then, I started paying a little closer attention to ingredients. You know, I'm not sure what propylene glycol is, but I'm pretty sure I don't need it in my vanilla extract.

Here's what I use...
vanilla
Morton & Bassett Pure Vanilla Extract.


Here's what the ingredient list looks like:
vanilla circled
No propylene, no corn syrup...just the good stuff. There are plenty of wonderful vanilla extracts out there. Read the labels, experiment and find one or two you like the best.

One more thing, when I first bought this vanilla, I nearly had a heart attack about the price...$13.00!!! But, look closer! The bottle is 4 ounces compared to the 1 or 2 ounce bottles of the other stuff I was buying, so it wasn't as expensive as I thought.

Is there a vanilla that you love?

Hop on over to see what else is working on Works For Me Wednesday over at We Are THAT Family!

Wondering what to make with that yummy vanilla? How about the ultimate chocolate chip cookies or diet killing cream cheese triangles?!?

29 comments:

  1. And no matter what anyone says, you CAN tell the difference between the REAL vanilla extract and the imitation!

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  2. My mother owns a gift shop and she sells the vanilla sticks in a plain glass bottle with a cork, and what you do is add vodka(gross right) and let it set and it turns out great vanilla extract. She also has cinnamon things that do same thing. I am sure you could find it anywhere. The great thing is you just keep refilling with vodka and it never gets old. (i think?)

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  3. Like Melissa said, have you considered DIYing your extract? I bought a 5th of vodka, a few vanilla beans online for a great deal and 3 months later, I have more extract than I know what to do with! :)

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  4. I've been buying Penzey's vanilla, but making my own sounds so EASY!

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  5. I just posted about making my own vanilla here: http://heavenlyhomemakers.com/blog/making-homemade-vanilla-extract-aka-why-laura-bought-a-gallon-of-vodka

    You've gotta try it with all the baking you do. It's SO fun. Except for the part about buying all the vodka. :)

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  6. I love Penzey's Mexican Vanilla. It's not cheap either, but lasts a long time and is so yummy!

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  7. I always use the Wilton's clear vanilla.

    :)

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  8. I use only pure vanilla extract, have for many years now. Just got a recipe the 'other day' that calls for Vanilla Bean Paste. Got some at Sur La Table, can't wait to try it out.

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  9. I use the cheap artificial essence which is bleah. I don t find real extract here maybe I should buy it online.

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  10. I buy my vanilla from Charles Baldwin, which is actually an old hardware store in western Massachusetts that has been making pure vanilla extract for 100 years. They sell online, and I think their vanilla is the best anywhere.

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  11. I will be giving this a try, it will make a great follow up gift to last years home-made vanilla sugar that I gave for Christmas.

    I make the vanilla sugar by putting a vanilla bean pod in a jar of caster sugar & just keep topping it up as needed.

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  12. Recently, it seems that blogs about making your own vanilla extract are everywhere, so if all the cool kids are doing it, I think I might have to give it a try too! It sounds like so much fun and to have that much vanilla on hand is awesome! I have been using Watkins Double Strength Vanilla Extract (low alcohol content but I think there still lots of artificial ingredients in it). But have been on a search to find the best stuff. I can't wait to continue reading your responses so I know what the appeals to the majority. Great post!

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  13. My MIL went to a cooking class in Louisiana and the chef there made his own vanilla by putting vanilla beans in Jack Daniels Whiskey. She made some for me and it's delicious!

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  14. I'm definitely a vanilla extract snob- I was raised using Adam's and my mother swears by the stuff if you don't have access to something from Mexico. I accidentally bought the wrong brand at the store the last go around, and thank goodness I got the smallest bottle because that stuff is disgusting!

    The Mister and I are considering making our own and giving it out as Christmas presents to our family and friends this year. It's a low cost gift that will have rave reviews!

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  15. YES! I MUST pay more attention to my vanilla-it is funny I was thinking that at the grocery store yesterday!

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  16. You are SO right what a difference it makes!! Have you ever tried Mexican Vanilla? OMG is it GREAT! - you have to be careful when buying it, but we used to have a shop and sold some, so it's what I still buy/use http://www.mexicanvanilla.com/

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  17. I like Mexican vanilla. I know you can now buy it in the states, but I still have my parents pick up a bottle for me when they vacation in Mexico. I honestly couldn't tell you the ingredient list; I'll have to look.

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  18. When my son went on a mission trip (can't remember which one it was) he brought me back a huge bottle of pure vanilla extract. It adds such an amazing taste to everything.

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  19. I agree.....the vanilla extract matters to me as well.

    I love baking.....and only want the best!

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  20. Vanilla bean paste! Love it but like with everything you have to check the label on the one you intend to buy as there could be "fillers".
    ~ingrid

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  21. I used to only use Penzey's vanilla, but now I make my own and it is far cheaper. I used this recipe: http://www.vanillareview.com/

    And I used a little more than double the beans called for.

    I got my beans on Ebay from this shop, and the price and quality seem to be the best here. http://stores.shop.ebay.com/Vanilla-Products-USA__W0QQ_armrsZ1. I got some from another store and didn't like them nearly as much.

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  22. I also just use the one that my mom has... but then I saw that one at the store on sale for $7, so I bought it on a whim. and now Im SOOO glad that I did!

    next up, Im gonna try to make my own.

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  23. Good quality vanilla can make all the difference. Love your blog- thanks for stopping by mine!

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  24. i bought some vanilla extract in mexico. it is the real thing and was super cheap. just had to pack it carefully and get it thru customs!

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  25. I'm gonna have to try that! I use all natural foods as it is for the most part from Wildtree (www.amanda.mywildtree.com) but never thought about my vanilla!

    Stop by my blog to read about a huge giveaway to the launch of my new inspirational carnival coming Monday called Just to Motivate Your Monday!!

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  26. Kind of off the topic, but I ran into a lady yesterday that said vanilla extract is the best rememdy for a teething baby. Makes sense now that I know it has alcohol in it.

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  27. My vanilla has corn syrup in it. I had no idea! Thanks for the tip!

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  28. Here's a great link for those of you considering making vanilla for Christmas gifts. (Has a recipe, as well as links to lots of online sources!)
    http://www.designmom.com/2008/12/vanilla-licious-gifts.html

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  29. I got a 12 oz. bottle while visiting a vanilla plantation in Hawaii, it was vaccuum sealed with a fresh vanilla bean inside. You split the vanilla bean, then fill the jar with vodka. Let it sit in a cool dark place for 6 weeks, then begin to use it. When it starts to empty, you refill and let sit for a couple weeks. You can use the bean up to 6 years, or remove the bean and put in a new one. They were flavoring everything with that bean, whiskey, dressings, gin, etc. Cool place, if I ever go back I'd tour it again and bring home more vanilla jars for gifts!

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