About the producer
Vanilla Tahitensis is the second most familiar vanilla in the world, behind its taller, skinnier cousin v. planifolia. In addition to being shorter and stouter, it is also stronger, fruitier, and more floral in fragrance and flavor. Oilier and with higher water content, v. tahitensis is more sensitive to heat than typical vanilla, making it amenable to no-bake recipes or relatively short, low-temperature bakes. On its own, the paste pairs wonderfully with tropical or juicy stone fruits, concentrating tart sweetness and imparting an elegant, anise-y aftertaste to whatever it accompanies.
To preserve the beans, we recommend submerging them in vodka. Over time, their exterior oils will transform the liquor into a potent extract. On any occasion that calls for an elegant amplification of vanilla’s presence in a recipe, simply cut a bean lengthwise, scraping out the pulp and seeds. Outside of a vodka bath, we suggest storing in a cool, dry place, wrapped in parchment paper, in an airtight container - we do not recommend refrigerating, which will degrade the oils. As is the case with many fresh and wild ingredients, a little bit goes a long way, assuring that these beans and their extract will enjoy a considerable lifespan in the pantry.
Papua New Guinea
1oz, ~6 beans