Many vanilla beans
My wonderful friend just visited Madagascar and brought me back several beautiful vanilla beans.
Any special recipes for using terrific, fresh vanilla beans? I want to get a lot of enjoyment out of these -- I may never have this many beans on hand at one time again.
Vanilla Bean Scones
from the Web
4 Cups All Purpose Flour
½ Cup Vanilla Sugar
(add 2 beans per cup of granulated sugar; store for 2-3 weeks before use)
1 tsp lemon zest (zest from one large lemon will do)
1 Vanilla Bean (7 inches) Divided 1/3 & 2/3
1 TBSP baking powder
½ tsp salt
10 TBSP unsalted butter cut into chunks
1 Cup whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 400 degrees, place racks in upper and lower 1/3 of oven
Cut vanilla bean in 2 pieces 1/3 & 2/3
Add into food processor flour, sugar, zest, baking powder salt, and seeds & pulp from larger vanilla piece. Pulse until combined.
Add butter and pulse until butter is pea sized.
In a large bowl beat cream, eggs, and vanilla extract.
Add flour mixture to bowl. Stir until incorporated. Do not over mix.
Divide dough in half. Pat one ball of dough into a 6 inch circle of about ¾ inch thick.
Cut into 1/8s. Or use a circle cutter.
Place scones on ungreased baking sheet. Use parchment paper for easier cleanup.
Bake 15-18 minutes. If scones are small, check after 12 minutes.
Unbaked scones can be frozen; add to cooking time when baked.
1 Cup of confectioner's (10x) sugar
2-4 TBSP of milk start with 2 TBSP
Seeds and pulp from smaller piece of vanilla bean
Mix and drizzle on cooled scones
Use anywhere you would use vanilla extract: Pound cake, cookies, caramel sauce (!), creme anglaise, creme brulee, etc.
To use instead of vanilla extract, scrape out the seeds and rub them with a teaspoon or so of sugar, using your fingers. This breaks up and distributes the otherwise clumpy seeds. I don't have a particular bean/extract substitution ratio because it seems pretty flexible (especially given that extracts vary in potency and beans vary in size), but I might use, say, one smaller bean for a pound cake.