You may or may not have noticed I have not written one single thing for 2 months and 18 days.
The reason for that is . . . .I’m not really sure.
Maybe it’s because it’s summer, and I took to heart the ‘lazy days’ part.
Or that my kids were with me 24/7 and they tied me up with only chocolate syrup and baby dill pickles to eat.
Or it could have been that the bunion on my right foot swallowed up my entire right leg and I couldn’t figure out how to get to the computer.
In any case, fret not, for I am here.
Still alive and kicking.
With self eating bunion in hand, and children tied up and back on their way to school.
I am here.
Spoon in my other hand, and a pot in my heart.
I am here.
Making yogurt. . . .like a mad woman.
Oh my Lord. I’m making yogurt. It has awoken me from my slumber. It is so light, creamy, and perfect. Seriously, the BEST yogurt I have ever tasted in my 39 years of loving food.
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Really, all I want to say to you is. . . . . .go make this yogurt. But, I can’t because I know what you’re saying. . .
“Are you OUT OF YOUR FREAKING MIND? MAKE YOGURT? WHAT DO YOU TAKE ME FOR? SOMEBODY WHO HAS ALL THE TIME AND PATIENCE IN THE WORLD?”
And no. I am not out of my mind. And I do not take you as anything but what you are. And I realize your time is valuable and that you have no patience.
Now that’s settled.
Just try it. You’ll love it. It isn’t hard at all. And most of the time it takes. . . . . it’s sitting all by its lonesome, with you doing nothing!
I do know you. And I know how much you like to do nothing.
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Ok. One more thing. The beauty of my recipe is. . . .it’s THICK. . .AND. . . .Low fat. A combination that’s hard to do with homemade yogurt. In my opinion its sweet like Stoneyfield Organic, but only better. If you want just plain yogurt, just eliminate the sugar, and you are good to go.
THICK LOW FAT Vanilla Homemade Yogurt
8 cups milk
1/2 cup full fat powdered milk ( I’m waving my pointy finger at you and telling you DO NOT buy non-fat powdered milk. Walk over to you neighborhood grocer aka. . .Wal-Mart or the like. . .then walk over to the International foods section, where the Hispanic/Latin Section is. . . .and there. . .in the powdered beverage section where they sell coffee and CHOC-O-LATTE. . . .*said in my sexy spanish accent* you will find NIDO. . .made by Nestle. . . .it is full fat powdered milk and it will make your yogurt PERFECT and thick. And not fat. Don’t worry. You’re not going to use the whole can. . .just enough to add the jiggle in your wiggle. Which is to say.. . .the pep in your step. . .not the fat in your trap.)
1/2 cup yogurt culture/starter ( You can use any grocery store PLAIN yogurt that says it has LIVE CULTURES. . .tho’ I’ve read you can also use Dannon or any name brand really, even though they don’t specify ‘LIVE” on the label.)
1/2 cup sugar
1. Heat milk to scalding. About 180 degrees. (I’ve done this a few times now, I don’t think the temperature is crucial. Really, just heat your milk until it starts to begin to boil, then turn fire off, and remove the pot from the heat.)
2. Remove from heat. Allow to cool down for about 1 hour, 120 degrees. (About 120 degrees for all you anal retentive types (Mr. Woo). You can just judge by putting your CLEAN fingers in the pot and if the milk is warm, like baby bath water warm, you are good to go.) Pour the cooled milk into another large bowl through a strainer to remove any skin or sediment that has occurred.
4. Pour one cup of cooled milk into a small mixing bowl. Add culture/starter to the small bowl. Whisk to incorporate. Add full contents of the small mixing bowl to the pot with remaining 7 cups of cooled milk. Whisk to incorporate.
5. Pour small amount into a small jar for plain yogurt. This will be your culture for future batches. (Just a little hint: Place an additional 1/2 cup in a plastic container and freeze for use if you happen to accidentally eat all your yogurt. Don’t ask how I know this.)
6. Add 1/2 cup of sugar to the remaining 7 cups of cooled milk mixture.
7. Pour sweetened mixture into 2-1 quart jars.
8. Place jars into a small cooler. Fill 3/4 way up with water warmed to 120 degrees. Close and let sit for 6 hours, then refrigerate another 6 hours or overnight.
9. Delight yourself with the heaven that is within these lovely jars. (Which, come to think of it. . .I just used old pickle jars. Which I’m not sure can be classified as lovely. But, I save them like they’re going out of style. It’s and an addiction I have, but that is a post for another day.)