How to store Tahitian Vanilla?
I just got back from Tahiti, and bought several small packs of vanilla beans as gifts. There are about 5 pods in a pack, vacuum sealed (but not tightly.) I want to use them as Christmas gifts, but don't want them to go bad or maybe mold (they look moist) before December.
Does anyone know if they will go bad? Should my friends get an early Xmas gift? Or can I put them in the fridge or freezer? Or just leave them as-is?
Any suggestions/advice would be greatly appreciated! This stuff smells awesome, and I don't want to ruin the beans!
If I were you, I'd make vanilla sugar (just Google it). You have plenty of time before Christmas for the vanilla flavors and aromas to start penetrating the sugar. Your friends are going to LOVE you this Christmas, especially if they bake and you can arrange for Santa to visit a bit early! :)
The instructions I got on my vanilla beans said to wrap tightly and do NOT put in fridge or freezer. Christmas is not that far away--they will be fine.
Vanilla sugar is nice for bakers or folks who sweeten their coffee/tea. I use the demarara sugar for this--the bigger crystals are great on top of sugar cookies.
I would store them in Vodka. The beans are preserved, they are soft therefore you can snip the top and squeeze out the seeds as needed, plus the vodka becomes vanilla extract.