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Breakfast from scratch

blueberry yogurt I’ve been playing around with making things from scratch lately.  I don’t like the idea of preservatives and artificial colors and flavors in my food, so it’s nice knowing exactly what’s going in there.

My most recent foray was making yogurt.  It turns out it’s super easy to make, and you can make it in a crock pot.  I used the recipe from Stephanie O’Dea’s “A Year of Slow Cooking” with a few modifications.

Homemade Yogurt

You’ll need:

  • A crockpot
  • Half a gallon of milk (Stephanie recommends whole, but I’ve had success with both 1% and 2%)
  • A starter (can be store-bought yogurt or some left over from your last batch)
  • A couple of heavy bath towels

And here we go!

  1. Pour the milk into the crockpot and turn it on low.  Walk away for 2 and 1/2 hours.  Go watch a movie, play a game, go for a walk, whatever floats your boat.
  2. Turn the crockpot off, and walk away again.  Stephanie recommends 3 hours, but I’ve found that after 1 and half to 2 hours the milk has cooled down enough (try putting some on the inside of your wrist to test the temperature… if it’s hot, let it cool for longer until it’s just warm).  We keep our apartment cold during the winter though, so see what works best for you.
  3. Once the milk has cooled down enough, scoop out some of it into a separate container.  Add half a cup of your starter to this and stir until there are no lumps left.  Then dump this mixture back into the crock pot and stir well.
  4. Wrap the crockpot in the towels to keep the remaining heat in, and leave it alone for around 48 hours (Stephanie recommends 8, but I find the yogurt is way closer to the thickness of store-bought yogurt this way).
  5. Put half a cup of your newly made yogurt in a separate container to use as your next starter (you wouldn’t want to forget, right?).  Put the rest into containers and pop all of the yogurt into the refrigerator.

That’s it!  I like to pour it over fruit, and you can add a little honey or agave nectar for sweetness (the picture above is yogurt with blueberries).  Refrigerated, the yogurt should keep for up to 2 weeks.

See?  Super easy.  But you can impress your friends by telling them you make your own yogurt.  They don’t need to know how simple it is.

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