Magic of Vanilla
Much more than just an ingredient in baked goods, vanilla is a magical flavoring and can do wonders for most foods and beverages. It's also very useful in calming our minds and bodies and helping us to feel good. Here are some thoughts and suggestions for making use of vanilla's magic. For instance, did you know that vanilla is...
* An antacid
Add a few drops to pineapple, fruit salads, or sauces containing citrus, to soften the sharpness and give it extra sweetening. Put a little vanilla in tomato sauces to neutralize the acidity.
* A lifter and enhancer
Add vanilla to give new "life" to flavorless seasonal fruits or other foods that need a flavor boost. Did you know that chocolate by itself tastes "flat" which is why it usually contains vanilla?
* An emulsifier
Add vanilla extract to egg batters (sweet or savory), waffle or pancake mix, baked goods, or cream sauces to smooth and blend overpowering flavors.
* A natural sweetener
Add a few drops of vanilla to vegetables, sweet potatoes, and salad dressings. It increases the natural sweetness of vegetables and provides a delicate, subtle flavor to salads.
* An adjunct flavor for seafood, fowl, and meat
Use with roasted, sautéed or barbequed meats, poultry, wild game or seafood. Split a vanilla bean and place it in a bottle of olive or other quality oils for sautéing meats, poultry, or seafood, or add a few drops of vanilla extract to cooked fish, fowl, or game as well as to sauces and marinades.
* A stomach sedative
Add pure vanilla extract to mineral water or apple juice to settle a nervous stomach. To soothe and please cranky, teething or sick children add a few drops of vanilla to their milk or juice. Away from home and need something quickly? Coca cola is filled with vanilla, and therefore used in many countries for calming an agitated stomach.
* A natural calmative
Place several vanilla beans in a bottle or jar. Use as aromatherapy to soothe jangled nerves. Sloane-Kettering and other medical facilities use the vanilla aroma to calm patients undergoing MRI and CAT scans.
More Vanilla Magic
* Burn your tongue on pizza or other hot food? Put a few drops of vanilla on your tongue to ease the pain and soothe the burn.
* Love the flavor of chilies but can't take the heat?
Sweet neutralizes heat: add some vanilla to soften the bite but bring out the sweetness and flavor of the peppers.
* Have problems with spiders living on the underside of your furniture?
Add a vanilla bean or two to your furniture polish. Apply to both sides of your furniture. Bugs don't like the smell and will leave, whereas you will have the sweet smell of vanilla lingering in the air.
* House paint smell too strong?
Add a tablespoon of vanilla extract to a gallon of paint to help cut the smell.
* Want to disguise your scent when fishing?
Rub vanilla on your hands before handling your fishing line. Lots of seasoned fishermen and women use this trick.
* Want to attract attention with the opposite sex?
Maybe even bring that special someone into your life? Wear some vanilla, check out the section on love and aphrodisia, and be sure to look at our wonderful selection of natural and pure vanilla-fragranced products.