Vanilla Bean Sugar and Sparkling Red Salt
Vanilla Bean Sugar:
2 cups granulated sugar (I used granulated, but caster works too)
4 vanilla beans, with seeds removed
1 vanilla bean with seeds
4 (4-6 ounce) jars
Sparkling Red Salt:
2 cups Chandon Sparkling Red
1 to 1 1/2 cups kosher or sea salt
Break apart all of the vanilla bean pods and the whole vanilla bean and add to a food processor with 1/2 cup of sugar. Processor for 3 to 5 minutes or until most of the vanilla beans are completely ground. Place a mesh strainer over a large bowl and pour the vanilla and sugar through the strainer. Sift the sugar through the strainer and discard or save the large pieces of the remaining vanilla bean. Scoop the sugar into jars or tins. Gift.
Sparkling Red Salt
Put the wine in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook on a simmer until thick and only 1 cup remains. Let to cool to room temperature.
Add 1 cup of the salt to the pot, and stir gently to coat the salt with the wine. If any liquid remains, add more salt a little at a time until all of the liquid is absorbed.
Spread the salt on a parchment paper-covered baking sheet to dry. Store in a cool dry place. (This may take a couple days.) Transfer to decorative jars. Gift.