This year, I'm starting early with Christmas. I have a ton of ideas for homemade gifts, but most of them take a looong time to mature, so I'll be posting in parts. Make sure you think about the time it takes to make your gifts, and consider starting early to make your holiday easier.
I've seen a lot of recipes online for homemade vanilla extract, so feel free to look around and find one that fits for you. Also, the recipes vary depending on concentration. Mine should be about medium concentration.
Homemade Vanilla Extract
1 liter bottle of flavorless vodka
5 vanilla beans (I chose Tahitian because I like the flavor better but others recommend Madagascan)
1. Cut the beans all the way down the middle to open up the flavor. (I've never made this before, but my beans seemed a little brittle)
2. Put the beans into the vodka bottle.
3. Close the bottle and have it sit for 4-6 months. Make sure to shake it every few days. The longer it sits, the better.
4. Strain out the beans and re-bottle the extract.
4. Come Christmas, you'll have a great homemade vanilla extract! Package it and give it away.
After you've used some of your vanilla, add more vodka and beans and it will be the gift that keeps on giving!