Originally Posted by Janet H
Do you think that you use more if it than the extract because of the form factor? the thick nature of the stuff makes it waaay too easy to dump out a tablespoon when a teaspoon may be called for...
The Nielsen-Massey site says to use equal amounts of paste or extract and the ingredients of the paste are given as "Sugar, Water, Vanilla Extract, Vanilla Beans, Gum Tragacanth (a natural thickener)".
At a guess I'd say that the sugar is a preservative but I could be wrong. Shelf life for the paste is given as 3 years.
As for paste or extract I expect it's down to preference - whether you want vanilla seeds to show in your dish - or preferred taste or not or what you can get hold of at the time.