My memories of vanilla extract center almost exclusively around measuring it, by the teaspoonful, from atop a stool in my childhood kitchen. Usually, it would be for cookies - snickerdoodles, more specifically, or chocolate chip (invariably the recipe from the back of the Toll House bag).
In their new Ingredient Spotlight, The Kitchn explains that, in addition to being a key player in childhood baking memories, there’s much more to this pantry staple. They even direct us to a recipe for making it yourself, if you’re into that. It takes a while, but you’ll achieve a more fragrant, more complex version than the red-capped McCormick that was a fixture of my kitchen cupboard growing up. If you start now, it’ll be ready just in time for stone fruit season.
Baker’s Best Friend: Vanilla Extract from The Kitchn