I have a question about the ingredient "vanilla bean paste" on the recipe "Classic Vanilla Cupcakes" from Christina Bailey.
I don't have personal experience with paste, but unless someone else comes along here's my best shot from looking around the internet. It is a one to one substitution with extract. The only other thing I can think of is that you will be missing the bean flecks, but you may gain some darkening of the product from the dark tone of the extract. Let us know ho it works out.
I would use 1 vanilla bean. Halve it lengthwise and scrape the seeds from the pod. Add half the seeds to the cupcake batter and half to the icing. Then save the pods for future use. You can cover them in sugar to make vanilla sugar; put them in a plastic bag and keep them in the fridge or freezer; or put them in a glass jar and cover with a spirit like vodka or rum to make vanilla extract.
Like Amanda says, split the bean lengthwise and scrape the seeds. The amount you use for the cupcake and frosting is really personal choice ( it won't alter the recipe). I would recommend a half to one bean for the cupcakes (more would be excessive). Whisk the vanilla beans with the eggs as the recipe states. Hope this helps!
Thank you guys a lot! This helps so much! I looked everywhere for the paste and couldn't fine any. I even had a hard time looking for the vanilla beans hole but i finally found them. Thank you again, this will help.