Sunday, January 13, 2013

Vanilla Simple Syrup

If you like to add a little sweetness to your coffee, tea or other drinks, simple syrup is a great concentrated sweetener, and is quick and easy to make. In the Midwest it isn't exactly "cold drink" weather this time of year but it works in hot drinks or desserts too.  It can also be brushed over a cooled cake to keep crumbs from getting into the frosting. This recipe is for vanilla but you can use other flavors too, depending on what you are using it for and what you like.  I added some to my half-n-half for coffee creamer.
Here's what you need:
  • 1/2-1 cup sugar (depending on how sweet you like it, and what you're using it for, I used 1/2 c)
  • vanilla bean, cut in half lengthwise, scrape and keep the seeds and pod 
  • if you don't have vanilla beans you can use about 1 1/2-2 teaspoons of vanilla or other extract
In a small saucepan over medium heat add 1 cup of water, sugar,  vanilla seeds and pod. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 5 minutes stirring occasionally until sugar is dissolved. Let cool, and strain (if the bean seeds floating in your drinks don't bother you, then you don't have to strain it). I used a coffee filter in a mesh strainer.  Pour cooled syrup into a container or jar with lid and refrigerate. It will keep up to 4 weeks.
Let us know what you use your simple syrup for, we love hearing your ideas!

~Simply Angie

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