Seriously, this looks so good I think I'm going to make it for dinner tonight. Find the recipe here
I also made some homemade vanilla extract a few weeks back. I found the recipe in this awesome book that I got for Christmas last year.
The homemade vanilla is relatively simple to make, and pretty inexpensive when you consider how much a tiny jar of extract costs. This recipe makes a ton (about two cups worth) and uses just five vanilla beans (about $3 at Whole Foods) and two cups of vodka (the cost depends on the quality of vodka you use, I had Smirnoff on hand.)
To make it, you just gather a mason jar (mine held 16 oz. filled up to the very top,) some vanilla beans (5) and rum or vodka. Open and scrape the vanilla pods, stuff the seeds and the pods into the jar and fill it up with your alcohol.
Then let it sit for a few months before using, shaking every week or so. Mine should be ready around Thanksgiving, before I begin all my holiday baking. And I seriously go through a lot of vanilla, more so than liquor (especially now that I'm pregnant!) The flavor of the homemade variety is supposed to be much better. This is what mine looked like after I made it, but it's already much darker now after just a few weeks.