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Buying vanilla beans in French Polynesia?

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Vanilla Extract


1. Mix 6 chopped vanilla beans per 1 cup 80 proof Vodka

2. Shake occasionally for 6 months

3. Strain out vanilla pieces.



1. Slice the beans in half and remove the seeds. Lay your cut bean flat, exposed side up. With your knife titled at a 45 degree angle, run the knife along the bean so that it scrapes up all the goo from the inside (also called caviar).

A dull knife, like a butter knife, ensures that you can harvest the caviar without further shredding the skin of the bean. Every so often, clean the blade with your fingers and make a caviar pile on your cutting surface.

Cut the bean skins into smaller pieces. Smaller pieces have more surface area which might yield a stronger extract. Whole and half beans tend to pile up above the vodka after shaking, smaller pieces don’t do this.

Stuff the cleaned bean skins and the caviar into your bottle.

Fill the bottle with vodka


2. Week 1 – Shake the bottle vigorously every day for at least the first week. Seed and cottony fibrous chunks will swirl in the bottle, this is normal. By the second or third day the extract should be a bit darker. Open it up and smell, yum that’s good! Contemplate wearing the extract as your signature scent.

Week 2,3, and 4 – Shake the bottle a few times a week.

Week 5 – Congratulations, you have a very raw vanilla extract! If you want vanilla seeds in your recipe give the bottle a shake before pouring.

Month 2 – Month 6 – Give it a shake when you can be bothered.


3. Strain out vanilla pieces. Put the funnel in the clean bottle. Put the filter or strainer in the funnel. If you want vanilla seeds in your final extract use a strainer, otherwise go for the coffee filter. Pour the extract into the funnel and filter it into the clean bottle. Cap tightly.

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I buy a lower middle of the road vodka. Something like entry level Smirnoff or Popov


Why use real cheap vodka when the expense is the vanilla ;)

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This all sounds wonderful.. We will be in Moorea on easter sunday 2014. Will any of these places be open?

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Doubt it but go to the church close to Le Marche for a memory that will stay with you forever!



Sent from my iPhone using Forums mobile app

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Stavy -


They have been kind enough to meet me during the holidays when the store is closed. Email them and find out if they will meet you at the store/factory. Only do this if you plan on buying a kilo or more as it is a holiday so make it worth while for the manager you meet you.



Edited by Tikiintahiti

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Thank you for your post on this spot for vanilla. Is it near the port?


Nope ..........


Exactly 1/2 mile west of the entrance to the IC Moorea, on the main road, lagoon side, you will see the sign.




Last trips goodies, vanilla was from this place, fresh and sealed right before your eyes. 1/2 kilo, was about $100 USD, that was 18 months ago.



Edited by Tikiintahiti

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Anybody have suggestions? Is it sold wherever beans are sold?

Or is it more economical to get beans and make your own?


Thanks for any suggestions!

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I brought organic vanilla beans vacuum sealed into the US with no problem. I infused them into organic vodka to make vanilla extract. I minced some up very finely and made ice cream with them as well. There was no problem bringing them into the US through California (which has notoriously strict ag laws) and I did of course declare them. I bought two packages with 5-6 whole beans in each for about $20--like I said, they were biologique (organic) so a bit more expensive.


I looked at prices a few places and didn't find much difference. Unless you are buying a huge quantity, the price difference between one place and another will be pennies.

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I know this thread is quite old but I thoroughly enjoyed reading it!!


Were not going until January 2019 but I like to look up things to buy. When I read about the vanilla beans and where to buy I was quickly making notes in my phone. The Sonoma Vanilla where I live costs about $49.00 a bottle- so I will be buying 1 kilo of the beans. I am sure my sister will want half!! I will also buy the oils and pineapple jams.


Is the plantation name Royal Noni?


I have tried making the vanilla with vanilla beans and vodka (Grey Goose vodka) but it tastes like alcohol with a little vanilla. I put 6 beans in the alcohol. I would not use this in any baking but it might taste good if you flamed it.


Thanks for a great read!


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