My wife recently requested I make her a soda that she'd actually like. Knowing that she loves cream soda, I made a batch-and it turned out tasting really good. The last batch I made was too much cinnamon, and ended up with a weird off-taste that most batches with cinnamon tend to develop.
I excluded the cinnamon from this recipe and added something else for a little bit of complexity beyond the vanilla alone.
2x 6 inch vanilla beans(cut into many pieces with kitchen shears)
1 pinch of raisins(about 6)-each cut in half by kitchen scissors
1 pinch of dried cranberries(about 6)-each cut in half by kitchen scissors
1 tbsp. honey
2 cups sugar
1 gallon of water
1 dash of ale yeast
Fill a stock pot with 2 quarts of water, place vanilla beans, raisins and dried cranberries into the stock pot. Bring to a simmer on medium-high heat. Let simmer 20 minutes, stirring on occasion.
Add 1 quart of cold water to the brew, letting steep about 10 minutes.
Stir in 1 tbsp of honey, add last quart of water and remove from heat. Let steep another 15 minutes. While steeping for 15 minutes, get your bottles and caps ready. Fill sink with cold water and ice. Not too full, as you'll be placing your stockpot in there to cool the brew.
After the brew has cooled to about 90 degrees Fahrenheit, scoop some into a coffee cup and add the yeast.
Strain the brew into your bottling bucket(or another stock pot). Stir in your yeast and bottle!
I got about ten 12 oz. bottles.
The sample taste I tried before bottling reminded me alot of Thomas Kemper's. It was double-vanilla strength with slight fruitiness. It had a beautiful golden-yellow color-much like honey or ginger ale.