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Vanilla Sugar

Reprinted with permission from Terra: Cooking from the Heart of Napa Valley by Hiro Sone and Lissa Doumani. Photography by Kiroaki Ishii and Kaoru Sakuraba. Copyright 2000.
Ten Speed Press, Berkeley, CA.
Adapted by StarChefs

This sugar is lovely for sweetening whipped cream or crème fraîche and even to use in coffee or espresso. Once made, it can be stored in a dry place indefinitely.

Yield: about 2 cups

  • 4 to 5 previously used, cleaned, and dried vanilla beans
  • 2 ½ cups confectioners' sugar

Preheat the oven to 350°.

Put the vanilla beans on a baking sheet pan and sprinkle with ¼ cup of the confectioners' sugar. Roast in the oven for about 15 minutes, or until the vanilla beans are dry and brittle but not burned. Let cool.

Break the beans into small pieces and put them in a food processor with the remaining 2 ¼ cups confectioners' sugar. Pulse the machine until the vanilla beans become a fine dust. Sift the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve; discard the bits that don't go through. Keep the sugar in an airtight container.