Often in our recipes we include “vanilla’d sugar” as an ingredient (with a brief description in parentheses). To be honest, we don’t have any other kind of sugar in our house, so we only use vanilla’d sugar even if we don’t note it in a recipe. Making vanilla’d sugar is easy, but it still requires a bit of explanation so we thought it’d be best to spell it out. Trust us, once you switch from regular sugar to vanilla’d sugar, you’ll wonder why this wasn’t something more commonly known and practiced. It adds an extra sweetness, like a secret ingredient that will make others wonder why their version of your recipe didn’t turn out as good as yours!
If you use a vanilla bean in a recipe, you can clean it with water (no soap) and let it dry for a couple of days before adding to the sugar. As you keep adding vanilla beans whenever you get new sugar or use vanilla in a recipe, you can take out the older beans. Vanilla beans won’t go bad, so old ones can stay in your sugar storage container for almost a year. Don’t remove any after less than 6 months, and as always, the more the merrier.
To get started:
5 lbs. of white sugar
3 vanilla beans
Split the beans lengthwise in half. Scrape the insides of the halfs, and discard nothing – it all goes in the sugar.
With the sugar in a large bowl, add the vanilla beans and scrapings.
Every last bit goes in.
Stir the beans and scrapings into the sugar and transfer to an airtight storage container. Use for making:
Cookies, cakes, and other pastries
Your morning cup of coffee
Toffee, fudge, and various confections
Basically anything you would use sugar for, use vanilla’d sugar to enhance it.