Did you know Vanilla beans are the birth child of the only fruit-bearing orchid in existence? This pod rightly falls into the category of an aphrodisiac as its been popularly known since time of antiquity to both enhance our mood and brain function. For centuries Vanilla has been recognized not only as a cognitive enhancing agent but also as an anti-inflammatory. Its sweet energetic has a calming effect on various systems in our body. When experiencing stomach aches, hunger pangs or irritation, which stress often brings to our nervous system, vanilla brings a profound soothing effect to these areas and because of this plants ability to quell agitation it also acts as a mild tranquiller and anti-depressant.
The term ‘Vanilla’ has become a popular catch phrase spanning the globe whenever there is a need to describe an approach that works for all- as universally we can all agree: Vanilla tastes great!
Even though the Vanilla orchid now grows around the globe, it’s origins began in Mexico and South America and used by the indigenous people of the continent for centuries long before the Spanish ‘discovered’ it or set foot upon their shores.
The pods are harvested when still not ripe, plunged into hot water then laid out to dry for 2 to 6 months. Vanilla is most often uses as an extract to enhance the flavor of our most popular desserts and confectionary delights spanning cookies, ice cream, cake’s to pies. Personally I like breaking off a piece of the pod and including it in my favorite Chai brew during cold winters or in my Hibiscus Lemonade during hot summer nights.