• Vanilla beans come from orchids. The flowers must be pollinated within one day of opening or else one has to wait for another year.
  • Commercial vanilla orchids are hand pollinated.
  • The most commonly used beans are Bourbon Vanilla Beans & Tahitian Vanilla Beans.
  • Like salt, vanilla contains compounds that enhance other flavours, even if there isn’t enough of it in a dish to impart a noticeable vanilla flavour.
  • Vanilla beans have to be cured for 3-6 months once they are picked, then dried for several more.
  • Artificial vanilla flavouring is a wood/paper industry by-product.
  • Vanilla beans dry out very easily, and so should not be kept in empty jars (as you see them in the grocery stores).
  • Properly stored (air tight), vanilla beans will last for at least a year.
  • Vanilla’s scent is generally believed to have a calming effect.
  • Vanilla was once considered an aphrodisiac.