Vanilla Bean Paste

pound cake dough
After posting about va-va-vanilla cookies and meyer lemon-vanilla scones, I received A LOT of email about vanilla bean paste.
vanilla bean paste
Vanilla Bean Paste is something I just started using within the last year. I love it!!! It really makes baked goods look and taste special. I thought it was going to come in a squeeze tube or something, but it is actually like a really thick extract filled with vanilla bean seeds. It can be used 1:1 in place of vanilla extract. You can also use it in place of vanilla beans! Ice cream, cakes, cookies, cupcakes...oh, the possibilities!

I'll leave you with a recipe for Vanilla Bean Pound Cake that we have devoured this week. We've eaten it for breakfast, dessert and even made French Toast with it. :) vanilla bean collage

Vanilla Bean Pound Cake
(adapted from the King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion)

1 c butter
1 c sugar
3 TBSP light brown sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 TBSP vanilla bean paste
1 tsp baking powder
1 & 3/4 c unbleached, all-purpose flour
4 large eggs
For the glaze:
1/2 c sugar
1/4 c water
pinch salt
1 TBSP vanilla bean paste

Preheat oven to 350°. Using the paddle attachment, mix together the butter, sugars, salt vanilla and baking powder until smooth & fluffy. Add the flour and mix well. Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping the bottom after each addition.

Spoon the batter into a lightly greased 9 X 5" loaf pan. Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Let cool in the pan 10 minutes.

Once the cake is out of the oven, make the glaze. In a small saucepan, bring the sugar, water and salt to a boil. Boil 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla bean paste.

Remove the cake from the pan and place on a cooling rack set over a cookie sheet. Poke the cake all over with a cake tester or toothpick. Slowly drizzle and/or brush the glaze all over the cake...until all of the glaze is used. Cool completely before slicing. pound cake strawberries
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