Add a piece of vanilla bean to your coffee for great taste, or put a piece in your soy milk. My friend blends a piece together with the almond milk that she makes.
Vanilla beans can be bought in spice shops or health food stores. See the photo for what they look like. They should be stored, wrapped well, in the freezer until use.
Because this is all natural and not artificially (caramel) colored as is the store-bought variety, it will not turn your cheesecakes or white cakes an unsightly pale brown. It is also much more concentrated.
Photography: Daniel Lailah
Styling: Michal Leibowitz