Grade A Vanilla Beans For Your Delightful Serve

by | Jun 11, 2022 | Vanilla Beans

Grade A Vanilla Beans Tahitian Planifolia Indonesia PNG

Vanilla is a spice that can use in any kinds of food, drinks, aromatherapy, cosmetics, perfumes, and many more. For this wide range using, grade A vanilla beans offer a unique flavor that will increase the final quality of the products. 

Vanilla, The Spice For Many Foods And Beverages

Vanilla is a spice that is taken from the Vanilla vine, a kind of orchid. Vanilla comes from the pods that produce by the plant. Actually, what people use is the chemical compound named vanillin. Vanillin is mostly found in the seed inside the pods that look like caviar. Some people love to use the seed as it, but others prefer to use the extract. Grade A vanilla beans are the pods that have maximum vanillin capacity and got a proper post-harvest process so that the flavor is original and strong. 

Vanilla is the original plant of Central America. It grows in the forest by holding its vine’s root to the tree’s stem. Vanilla grows like other orchids. They need sunshine but prefer the warm one. So usually, orchids grow under the tree’s leaves. In this situation, orchids don’t disturb the tree. It only hangs and gets water or nutrition from the air. But, by hanging on the stem, the orchids get morning and evening sunshine. During the day, they are protected by the leaves. 

Brief History of Vanilla

In the 16th century, vanilla was brought to Europe by Cortez. Cortez is an adventurer that loves to visit other countries. He introduced this spice to Europeans. Europeans got interested and tried to plant it. The problem is that vanilla pollination must be helped by the Melipona bee. This is a small bee that lives in Central America. As this bee can’t live in another place for years, European only can grow their vanilla but can’t harvest the pods. 

A new history started in 1841 when Edmond Albius found a simple way to help pollination. He uses a small stick, like a toothpick. With this simple tool, Edmond opened the lid that covered the ovary and then stuck the pollen to it. These simple proven methods can produce pods. Since this method was found, people can produce vanilla beans and introduce them to other countries. 

Vanilla farms open in many countries. The biggest producer of vanilla beans in Madagascar, then followed by Indonesia, Hawai, and many more. These country produce their own specialty vanilla beans. The differences are the size, the color, the odor, and the flavor. Evidently, almost all vanilla farms require a great number of workers as all processes must be done manually.

Vanilla Pollination

Planting vanilla can start from the seed, but this will takes a long time until it produces the first bump. The farmers can use the cutting for faster production. Since the first flower bud appears, farmers should check their farms every day to find blossom flowers. Every blossoming flower must be pollinated soon. If the flower is not pollinated, the flower will fall the next day. Each bump can contain 15-20 flowers that aren’t blossoming together. 

The pollination will follow by the growth of the pods. This process takes a time of 6 to 9 months. The pods are ready to harvest when they get yellow color on the tip. If the pods are harvested too soon, the vanillin inside will not reach its maximum. But if it is harvested lately, the pods will be too ripe. It will break and spread the seed around. The farmers will lose the pod. For this long waiting time, sometimes there are thieves who steal the ripe pods. Farmers usually give a sign to their pods so that they will be known to be stolen by someone. 

The pods that have been harvested would get a higher price if they got a proper post-harvest process. This includes the drying process, soaking in hot water, covering, fermentation, and storage until the vanilla flavor appears. This may take time about 5-6 months. 

The vanilla beans that are ready to use can use in any kinds of food and beverage. Central American residents add it to their chocolate drinks. It is also used in many bakery products. Chocolate and ice cream will be tastier if added with the right vanilla beans. 

Grade A Vanilla Beans In Your Delightful Serve

Grade A vanilla beans will make desserts, sauce, ice cream, drinks, slices of bread, and many other food and beverages more delightful. It does add not only a special taste but also a special aroma that will invite appetite. 

Lower-grade vanilla may give flavor, but using grade A will give stronger flavor with only a small amount. So, this can be a way to save money. The extract can be kept for months. The skin of the pods, after the seed is taken, can still use to get the extract. Soak it in a proper solvent, and close it tight. Use it as needed, then close it again. 

Using grade A vanilla beans can make foods and beverages have more flavor. This is also a way to save money.