Grade A vanilla beans from Madagascar are commonly referred to as Bourbon vanilla beans. A common misconception is that dishes containing "bourbon vanilla", call for both bourbon and vanilla. While this might occasionally be the case, they are usually referring to the gourmet Madagascar Vanilla Beans. This term is synonymous for the Bourbon Vanilla Beans, named after the islands it originally came from, The Bourbon Islands (now known as the Reunion). Bourbon Vanilla Bean commonly references the specific variety of vanilla produced from the vanilla planifolia species of vanilla orchid. The flavor of grade A gourmet vanilla from Madagascar is rich, deep, and creamy. Madagascar vanilla has undertones that are sweet and buttery, sure to please the palate. Vanilla beans from Madagascar are well-suited for everyday baking recipes, drinks, and desserts. These vanilla beans are easy to split and scrap and obtain all of those tiny vanilla seeds and their flavor. Here's a great recipe for vanilla simple syrup that can be used in all of the above! When you buy Madagascar vanilla beans online from SloFoodGroup, you are receiving some of the best vanilla beans in the world. See for yourself what everyone is talking about and discover just how beautiful vanilla can be. Shop today for the absolute best vanilla beans in the world. Your taste buds will thank you.
Mexico is said to be the birthplace of vanilla. In modern times, most vanilla beans available today come from Madagascar, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia Uganda Comoros and other vanilla production growing regions. The beans themselves come from a vanilla vine, a climbing variety of orchid known commercially as v. Planifolia or v. Tahitensis. To obtain fruit from the orchid plant hand pollination of the vanilla flower must occur within 12 hours of flowering. Once pollinated the flower bears the green vanilla fruit. Over many months of growing, harvesting and curing this green bean will become what most people know as a vanilla bean.
It is said, somewhere around 1841 Edmond Albius first discovered how to hand pollinate the vanilla orchid. To do this a small splinter of wood, stem, or tooth pick was used. The tool is used to lift the flap and exposing the male reproductive area of the flower. Once exposed it can be manually connected to the female reproductive area known as stigma.
This is how successful commercial vanilla pollination began. This breakthrough moment is what kick started vanilla cultivation in the Indian island countries such as Reunion, Comoros, Mauritius, and Madagascar.