Who doesn’t like vanilla ? Vanilla ice cream, vanilla cupcakes, vanilla cotton candy, vanilla late, vanilla Tiramisu – Vanilla must be the most popular flavor on Planet Earth. It is my favorite and probably yours too! Here are some cool facts I dug up about those beans:
7 Cool Facts About Vanilla Beans
1. A vanilla bean is a dark pod of a climbing orchid, native to Central America. More than 75 % of all vanilla is grown in Madagascar and Reunion.
2. Mexican vanilla is the most prized complex and delicate, followed by Madagascar vanilla with a rich and creamy flavor.
3. Quality vanilla beans are fragrant, dark brown or black in color, glossy, moist, supple and long. The tiny black seeds should be scraped from the pod with the point of a pairing knife.
4. Real vanilla is hand- pollinated, hence the reason why it is so expensive. It is the second most expensive spice after Saffron, 5 kg of fresh vanilla pods are needed to get 1 kg cured vanilla beans.
5. In the U.S.A any product labeled ” vanilla extract ” by law- must derive from true vanilla.
6. Store vanilla beans in a cool dark place in an airtight container. In the tropics they are wrapped in waxed or oiled paper and stored in boxes.
7. Never refrigerate vanilla beans or they will harden and crystallize.