Vanilla is a plant belongs to the family Orchidaceae, native to tropical
American forests. Both V. planifo¢lia Andr. (Mexican or Bourbon vanilla) and V.
tahiten¢sis Moor (Tahitian vanilla) have fruits called vanilla beans which are
picked before fully matured. Vanilla is a choice of flavoring agnet prepared
from vanilla beans with or without the addition of sugar, dextrose, or glycerol.
Vanilla extract contains soluble matter from not less than 10 grams of vanilla
beans in 100 milliliters. Vanillin (chemically 4-hydroxy-3-methoxybenzaldehyde)
is a constituent of vanilla or is prepared synthetically.
Vanillic acid: the
oxidation form of vanillin. The chemical designation is
Ethamivan: the diethylamide of vanillic
acid; used as a central nervous system stimulant, respiratory stimulant, and
Ethyl vanillin: white to pale yellow crystal; melting 76.5 C;
having 3.5 times stronger flavour and more stable in organic solvents and in
storage than vanillin but does not have the true flavour. It is used in
pharmaceutical preparations and the food industry as a flavoring agent to
replace or strengthen vanilla.
Acetovanillon: white crystal a faint vanilla
odor; melting point 115 C; soluble in hot water, alcohol, benzene, chloroform,
and ether; used as a cardiotonic drug. Chemical naming is
Ethyl vanillin is a synthetic compound that is 3½ times stronger in flavor than
real vanilla, although the flavor is not quite the same. It is used as a
substitute for vanilla in foods and perfumes, because it is less expensive and
keeps better in storage and transport. It is closely related to the slightly
smaller molecule methyl vanillin.
A Comparison of the Aoac Spectrophotometric Method for Vanillin and a GLC Method
for Vanillin and Ethyl Vanillin in Alcoholic Beverages
Most of the vanilla sold in commercial products is
made using ethyl vanillin., hence it is artificial as ethyl vanillin does not
occur in nature. Some of the first vanillas used coumarin (new mown hay) but
this aroma has now been banned. Had a fantastic aroma and may still be used in
tobacco flavours. Present in several natural products with Tonka beans having
the highest concentration. Cinnamon contains coumarin! Lots of French
perfumes contain coumarin. On a summers day as the hay dries you can smell it
in the air. Has been replaced by dihydro coumarin in some
vanillas. Heliotropine is also used as well as butter components. Ethyl
Vanillin is about 3 to 4 times stronger than vanillin and has better stability.
In propylene glycol based flavours vanillin and ethyl form acetals.Because
vanillin is cheap most vanilla flavours are very strong and hence any losses due
to reactions with the food are not noticed.