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  1. Lovely.
    I have a bottle of vodka based extract that I started over 10 years ago. I just top it up with vodka when it is getting too low, and every year I add another few vanilla pods. It is so rich and luscious now.
    My husband has been known to sneak the bottle and add it to his coffee……
    Chocolate perfumed orchids are fabulous. My dad used to grow them in Australia when I was a child. Haven’t seen them since.

    • Oh how wonderful! It is nice to just keep topping it off. At this point mine is a bout 3 years and it is just starting to have a nice depth to the flavor. I even added a bit of gingersnap liquor to it that I had around and it gave it a nice subtle richness.

  2. I’m partial to Indian vanilla beans. I usually get them from the guys at beanilla.com. Kinda smokey and chocolately. Killer vanilla extract with brandy, I don’t think vodka really adds anything. I also go thru it like crazy as well. They are awesome for making home made kahlua.

    • Mmmmmm. Thanks for the new pairing, Michele. The hope with the vodka was a clean slate for the vanilla to shine through. I am intrigued to branch out to other combinations, however. I might want to get a third jar going. 🙂 Hello holiday baking!

  3. I got my vanilla beans from vanillabeansusa.com…great price…get the b grade if you are making extract since b grade are just ones that are dried out more (thus less water in you extract…more flavor) My kids love the orchid room at the phipps…they have ones that smell like chocolate there too!

    • Ooooh, thanks for the tip, Citysister! I think mine were a bit moist so it may be why it is taking longer to get the robust flavor I want. Chocolate orchids? Oh man. I must smell these. Isn’t Phipps magical….

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