Jul 3, 2012

Make your own Flavor Extracts

I am a big fan of flavor. Adding flavors to some things can be a challenge. This challenge causes me to be on the forever lookout for new and natural flavor enhancers. Which is why I have just discovered how to make my own extracts!


You wouldn't believe how simple it is. Sometimes I pay up to $7.00 for a natural extract, but after discovering how to make my own I will NEVER pay that again. ...and I hope you don't either.

What you'll need:
-mason jars
-plastic wrap
-vodka, any kind will do
-fruit or herb that you want to extract the flavor from
-cheese cloth
-(optional) amber glass bottles


So here's how it is done. First you pick the flavor that you want to make into an extract. I chose a few flavors that I regularly use such as blueberry, raspberry, rosemary, cilantro, and bacon. Yes, bacon! For the fruits and the herbs it is quite simple. You take your flavor, raspberries for example (about 2 cups), and mash them up really good, into a pulp. I used mason jars, but you can use whatever jar you want. Fill the jar about half way with your mashed fruit or herb. Then fill the rest of the way with vodka. Put the lid on the jar and shake it well to get everything mixed together. Take the lid off and place a layer of plastic wrap over the top of the jar and put the lid back on. This prevents the lid from rusting. Let this mixture sit in a dark place for about 3-4 weeks. (If you can remember to shake it every few days, that helps too.) With herbs you may have to fill the jar with more vodka over time as the herbs will absorb the liquid. After 3-4 weeks use a cheese cloth to strain out the fruit or herb and you'll have your extract! The optional amber glass bottles help to keep the extract for longer, but that step can be left out as long as you keep your extract in a cool dark place.


For BACON! extract you do something slightly different. Cook some bacon and keep the bacon grease. Pour about a half cup of bacon grease into a mason jar along with a few pieces of bacon. Top it off with vodka and shake it well. Leave the jar in a cool dark place for 1-4 days, then place it in the freezer for 1-2 weeks. When you take it out of the freezer the bacon grease will have solidified making it easier to separate it from the flavored vodka. When the vodka is separated from the bacon and frozen grease you'll have your extract. Store it in a cool dark place.

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