Have you ever wanted to add a touch of flavor to something and didn't quite know how? I make these delicious shortbread cookies and I always wanted to try adding cinnamon to them. I tried the powdered kind of cinnamon, but it really did not have the richness of flavor I was looking for. Then one day I was in the grocery store and I saw their selection of extracts. They had all kinds of them, coconut, rum, butterscotch and many more. Being the do-it-yourselfer that I am, I wondered if I could make they from scratch. I am always concerned about what goes into the items that are sold in stores, and I don't trust labels, that is why I like to make things myself.
So I did what anyone would do when they want to know something....I looked on the internet!
After doing some research, I was ready to try my hand at making some of my own extracts. After a bit of experimentation, I came up with a few that I thought were really delicious. Some I never could get right, like coconut, so I am still working on them, but here are the ones that I am rather proud of:
Sterilize a 16 ounce jar in the dishwasher or by boiling
Combine the ingredients (you do not need to heat)
Screw on the lid tightly and shake well
Place in a cool dark area like a closet or basement
Allow 2 to 3 weeks to steep, shake well every few days
Remove lid and strain through cheesecloth
Pour strained contents into a clean jar with a tight lid
No need to refrigerate
Pretty simple, eh? The resulting extracts are potent and very flavorful. They are great for bake goods or drinks, but be careful not to use too much. They also make wonderfully thoughtful gifts for friends and relatives that cook. I love giving homemade items for presents, I think that they are much more heartfelt.
Have a great week!