When you see the term “French vanilla” it does not mean the vanilla comes from France, but it describes a particular type of custard base for vanilla ice cream. This base is associated with a strong vanilla flavor and odor, a rich golden color, and small flecks of vanilla beans. It’s a good marketing ploy! To get more of a French vanilla flavor in your baked goods, etc., use real vanilla beans. The best way to get the flavor out is to:
Pound them! Yep, flatten them out and then split down the middle. You’ll get greater surface area and it will be easier to scrape the seeds. Then you can use the seeds & beans to flavor, make homemade vanilla with vodka, etc.
Don’t throw away pods after infusing – dry and put in sugars, etc.