What am I?
I'm in an estimated 18,000 products worldwide. I'm used in a variety of sweet and baked foods, and even in perfumes. However, even though I'm known for my scent and flavor, when I'm a fresh bean I have no aroma (or scent).
Where I grow
I grow on a plant in the orchid family, a popular flower. I used to be only pollinated with a certain bee, but I can also be pollinated with a stick! This helped make me more available across the world. As a fruit, I can grow up to 8 inches in 6 weeks, but it takes nine months for me to mature and to be harvested (picked). I'm most commonly grown on the island of Madagascar.
After I'm picked
Once I'm harvested, I'm blanched (put in boiling water for a short time) and then set out in the sun to dry for about 10 days. That's when my aroma comes out. Once I'm fully cured, which takes about 4 months, I'm ready to add to your favorite treats - even ice cream!
Did you guess... Vanilla
Vanilla is anything but boring! Watch the video to learn more about vanilla.
Feed your food curiosity! Snackster Sam provides fun and educational content about food that grows. Join the adventure. Download the Snackster Sam app from Google Play or the App Store!