This is a nice flavor infuser that you can add to any dessert calling for granulated sugar. Or you can use it to make Sugared Fruits.
- vanilla beans (you can find these at your grocery store in a glass jar along with the other vanilla products or order online from King Arthur Flour)
- granulated sugar (if you are going to use it in a recipe) or baker’s sugar (if you are going to use it to sugar fruits)
Lay each vanilla bean flat on a cutting board. Starting at one end cut through the vanilla bean with a paring knife, not all of the way through if possible. Gently open up the slit and bend back to get at the yummy seeds inside (see below). Scrape the seeds out with the tip of your knife and mix with 2 cups of sugar and bury the vanilla bean. If you want a stronger flavor use more beans or less sugar. Store for a couple of weeks before using.
The top bean has not been cut yet and if you look closely at the bottom bean you can see it has been cut open.
Lots of seeds that I have scraped out below.
Vanilla sugar – oh does this smell good! See the tiny specks of vanilla?
Besides putting in desserts use the sugar to make glazed pecans. Heat 1/2 cup of the vanilla sugar in a small saucepan, stirring constantly until the sugar melts into a syrup. Add 1/2 cup pecans and stir to coat.
Cool nuts on a piece of aluminum foil coated with nonstick spray. Serve alongside a holiday dessert.