Hi all! I'm looking for advice and information on making vanilla sugar. In the past, I've used one vanilla bean per cup of white sugar, sliced the beans lengthwise for more surface area, and mixed the seeds in with the sugar. After a few weeks in a mason jar, the sugar has a strong aroma but the flavor is pretty weak. I'd like to find a way to make the flavor stronger.
I haven't been able to find much information about how the sugar extracts the vanilla flavor. The only thing I could come up with was that the oils in the bean were being extracted through osmosis. I'm hoping someone with more expertise can confirm this or point me in the right direction.
If it is osmosis, I'm wondering if creating a vacuum in the mason jar would result in significantly stronger vanilla flavor. I know sugar extracts oil from citrus peels better in a vacuum (as in Jeffrey Morgenthaler's oleo saccharum recipe), I was curious if anyone had tried this or other methods for increasing the potency of vanilla sugar.