What are tonka beans - Diptheryc odorata?
Tonca Beans - Dipteryc odorata from Brazil are the seeds of a butterfly flower plant, the Tonka tree, which is native to the Caribbean and South America. The Tonka beans are extracted from by the Tonka fruits and are then dried. But before they are dried, they get a daily bath in rum, which reduces the high coumarin content of the bean. Tonka fruits are oval, yellow, 10 cm long, and resemble a mango, with just one seed. Its pulp is sticky, tasteless, and smells terrible. The seeds, however, are the fragrant, almond-shaped, dark brown to black, 3-6 cm long tonka beans.
What do tonca beans taste like?
The taste of tonka beans is sweet and reminiscent of vanilla, bitter almond, and woodruff. It is very complex and intense. It is used mostly as a vanilla substitute, with a slightly bitter taste compared to vanilla. The Tonka bean belongs to the varieties of intensive spices, and you use them sparingly. It also has a high coumarin content, which is responsible for the intensity of the spice. It would be best if you did not consume Coumarin in large quantities. About 2 mg per kg of food is classified as harmless. The tonka bean is a spice of the star chefs.
How do you use tonca beans?
The tonka bean is a hard seed, which, like the nutmeg, is best used sparingly with a spice grater. To aromatize your food creations, usually, a pinch or a maximum of a knife tip is sufficient.
The tonca bean goes well with all desserts, whether on whipped cream or in cocoa or more complex as in the upscale gastronomy. Today, many star chefs refine their new desserts creations with tonka beans, such as mango sorbet, pistachio cream, or fruit compote. It even goes well with sorbet, chocolate, Christmas cookies, cakes, biscuits, chocolates, and marzipan. Besides, you can refine a tomato soup or tomato sauce with its unique aroma. The tonka bean is intense and also goes well with intensive dishes like venison (venison, deer, or wild boar). Try a variant of Crème Brulée with Tonca Bean. It gives the cream an extraordinary aroma. After that, you can remove and dry the tonka bean. It can be used for four more uses of this kind and is sufficiently aromatic.
How do I store spices?
Storage: It is best to keep the tonka beans cool, dry, airtight, and protected from the sun.
Perfumery Industry: The coumarin content is responsible for the intense scent of the tonka beans, which makes them highly sought after by the perfume industry to produce fragrances.
Good to know about Dipteryc odorata
The tonka bean, or the ingredient coumarin, is also used as a substitute for real vanilla because of its vanilla-like taste under the name "Mexican vanilla." In Germany the prohibited from 1981 onwards the use of the plant for food preparation. Since 1991, this prohibition exists in a limited form. The use of tonka beans is only permitted if the maximum allowed levels of Coumarin in the prepared food are not exceeded. According to Annex 4 to Section 2 (3) of the Flavorings Ordinance, these are currently 2 mg per kg. These limits apply to Coumarin as a food additive. These rules don't apply when they use them in perfumes or candles.