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The art of preparing Vanilla

The sale of vanilla is not just only to the suggested and argument. Must still be treated with sensitivity and respect the rules of the process constituting the last link of its existence. »

Pollination is an important step.

This is to manually pollinate the flowers of this orchid called vanilla.
During the flowering phase, which lasts three months, pollination is done every day at dawn with a wooden or bamboo stylus.



The Green Vanilla.

If fertilization is successful the fruit reaches its adult size in six weeks but is harvested mature than eight to nine more months tard..




Sorting of green vanilla

Outside the building, workers are responsible for sorting the green vanilla beans one by one:




• long and short pods are separated
• immature pods are set apart
• the split pods, too, are set apart
The different categories of thus formed pods are placed in baskets ready for the stage of scalding.



The preparation

The preparation method called "method Bourbon" was largely adopted by all producers. After picking the preparation of vanilla is comprised of a series of operations. Each phase is important


Scalding

This involves immersing wicker baskets containing green vanilla beans in water heated to 65 °. Immersion takes about 3 minutes and allows the mortification of the pods.




Steaming :

The pods are then placed in large padded blankets wooden crates to avoid heat loss for 12 hours (steaming or sweating). It is at this stage that takes its vanilla chocolate color, catalyzing the fermentation for further development of the characteristic aroma of vanilla.




Vanilla pod out of parboiling



Sun drying

Then comes the stage of slow drying vanilla: vanilla pods should keep a water content neither excessive not insufficient so that their aromatic substances are expressed fully and that any éventualitée mold is excluded.
The operation is repeated every day and for several weeks! The sun exposure time decreases as the progress of this phase.

During these successive exposures to the sun, vanilla continues to develop its flavors so typical.




Drying in the shade

Once completed the period of sun dried vanilla beans are placed on racks in the shade in ventilated areas for at least 2 weeks. The trays are flat trays openwork, screened for vanilla dry in optimal conditions.
Again, vanilla beans are the object of attention. The workers of vanilla must:
• return regularly
• separate split pods and cloves non-split
• sort the beans according to their quality, that is to say according to their color, moisture content, and length, which are the key parameters then the category of vanilla beans
• stop the drying process in the shade to those sufficiently dry.




Calibration :

The pods are measured and classified one by one "split" "unsplit" "black and red. "The length and color determine the value of the vanilla. Of the same length and the same classification pods are usually grouped and tied booties..





The cultivation and processing of vanilla require ongoing attention, ancestral knowledge and require very labor intensive.