Vanilla Paste Madagascar
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Vanilla Paste Madagascar

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1 qt bottle $62.35

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Vanilla Paste

We carry D’Alessandro brand vanilla paste. This thick, rich Vanilla Paste is made from genuine Madagascar vanilla beans infused into a thick, sweet syrup. These richly flavored vanilla beans are scraped into the paste, providing the black flecks that indicate natural vanilla bean flavor.

With the price of vanilla skyrocketing due to crop and supply issues in Madagascar, vanilla paste is a more reasonable alternative to the beans or extract.

Many bakers and chefs like the flecks of vanilla you get when you scrape the beans, but don’t want the trouble. Vanilla paste is a quick easy way to get the flavor and look of vanilla, without the work.

Here is the lowdown on vanilla paste vs other forms of vanilla from an excellent article by Rose Levy Beranbaum:

The now ubiquitous vanilla paste usually contains natural vegetable gum such as carogene for viscosity so it is thickened but still fluid enough to pour. The paste also may contain either the seeds and/or the pod, and sometimes a small amount of vanilla extract in alcohol or sugar syrup.

The vanilla bean seeds add a subtle earthy depth of flavor and unique sweet quality, but the bean alone cannot offer the full depth of flavor. The extract, though easier to use, lacks the sweet roundness and in excess may even impart a bitter edge, hence the popularity of the vanilla pastes which offer a balance of complexity, richness and fullness of flavor. Vanilla paste, however, is not as strong as extract because it is not full strength or full extraction. It is, therefore, somewhat of a compromise. The ideal flavor profile would be a combination of extract and seeds, and second to that paste, and seeds.

Here is a recipe for French toast using our paste:

Vanilla French Toast

  • 6 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • pinch ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon Madagascar Vanilla Paste
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 8 (3/4-inch thick) slices white bread
  • Maples syrup, for serving

Preheat oven to 200°F.

Whisk together eggs, milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, Madagascar Vanilla Paste, sugar and large pinch of salt in a large bowl. Add two slices of bread to milk mixture, and toss to coat.

Heat 1 tablespoon butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat until foaming subsides. Place two slices of bread on skillet and cook until browned on the bottom, 2 to 3 minutes.

Flip and brown on the other side, another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate in the oven.

Repeat process with remaining slices of bread.

Serve French toast with maple syrup.

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients: Sugar, Water, Ground Vanilla Beans, Alcohol, Vanilla Bean Extractives, Xanthan Gum