Yesterday I was at a food fair in Brussels and I bought these fantastic pods in a glass tube; vanille bourbon de Madagascar. Payed 8 euro for 5 pods. Lovely soft pods, incredibly fragant.
A few years ago I made my own essence with a low quality quite tough vanillapod. Made it by cutting the pod in small bits and macerate them in wodka for a few month, then sieved it in a paper coffe filter. I use this bottle frequently, it keeps a nice smell. It goes in pannacotta and other deserts.
Why wodka? Well, imo wodka has no smell nor taste of it's own, it's ideal for making extracts.
My question is wether other members make vanilla essence and how you do it. Or, does anyone have suggestions to improve my simplistic method?