First of all, I don't know how I missed jumping on the bandwagon sooner with this one. As I was doing more research an the making of yogurt, it seems as though there are many people out who have already discovered how easy and less expensive this is.
I put my 8 cups of 1% milk into my crock pot at 2:30pm and set the crock to low (the 10 hour setting on my crock pot).
At 5pm, I walked past the counter and simply unplugged it.
At 8pm, I poured 2 cups of the milk into a bowl, added a half a cup of plain yogurt, whisked it, poured it back into the crock, whisked again, put the lid back on and wrapped the crock in a couple of bath towels.
The yogurt somehow made its way into my dreams. I dreamed I awoke to find fairly curdled milk that was no good and had to throw it all out. Luckily, that wasn't the case in real life!
When Biju's alarm went off at 5:30am, I went to the kitchen to check out my work (yeah, a lot of work it was!). I took the lid off and presto change-o, we had yogurt!
I put the crock into the fridge and went back to bed.
For breakfast, I took some canned peaches w/ a bit of the juice (I didn't have any other fresh or frozen fruits that would go well with the yogurt, so went with the canned goods), put that into the blender, gave it a whirl, then added that to a couple of scoops of the yogurt. I stirred it gently (there were living organisms in there, after all), and sucked it down with a straw! I thought Ajay would be all over this, as he loves his yogurt snacks. Unfortunately, Ajay wasn't as thrilled as I was. I'll try to find another way to serve it that he'll enjoy. I can't wait to try it on some Indian dishes! (Hmm, there is some chicken curry leftover in the fridge..I think I've got lunch figured out!)
In the future, I may try using whole milk, maybe even whole organic milk (but that would be way expensive - but so much healthier). In doing my research, I discovered that anything less than whole milk is actually not healthy for you at all, like we've all been led to believe, and that really, the whole milk w/ the animal fats in it, isn't bad! Amazing what you'll find when you do some research.
I think my next yogurt project will be to make some yogurt for Alex! I will use his rice milk and I'll try to get my hands on some store-bought plain rice yogurt. I don't know where to find it and I'm afraid of how much it will cost me, but I'm hoping that in the end, when we're sitting with a crock pot full of yogurt that Alex CAN eat, it will all be worth it!
So on to the pictures!
Here is what the yogurt looked like this morning, straight out of the crock pot. I was thrilled that it had set up like it was supposed to. There was also an odd sense of pride, too! You can see a little bit of the whey (yellow liquid) in the crock pot.
I dumped almost all of the yogurt into an old applesauce jar that had been washed. The rest that didn't fit got used for my breakfast and put into a strainer...
I lined this old strainer with a coffee filter and let all the whey drip out. I only did this for a few hours, but the result was a thicker yogurt. I could let it sit until, say, tomorrow, and I'd really have some thick stuff!! It can even get so thick to be cream cheese consistency. Then I could actually use it in place of cream cheese - so much healthier!
The whey I can keep in the fridge for awhile and use for different things (I'll have to look up some recipes!). I plan on using some of the yogurt in place of milk in my pancakes. I've read that it can be used in place of sour cream, too (when the whey is dripped out and it reaches a sour cream consistency.) OH - and I had lunch already. I used the thicker stuff on my chicken curry, and guess what? It tasted just like plain yogurt! Go figure. It was so creamy and yummy!
While I'm here, I"ll share a few other pics. These first two were of a sore of some sort on Alex's upper lip.
I'm guessing it probably has something to do with his diet. Same with the sore on his leg - it looks like it started out as eczema and he itched it so much, it started weeping. I've been applying the same mixture and while it has started to look better, it is still there, and still bothers him. I'm hoping the yogurt will help flood his system with good bugs and make him healthier all around!
Here is a pic of the boys while they were both recovering from their bout of what we think was bronchitis.
This yogurt recipe was so simple I hope you try your hand at making some up! If you do, please let me know how it turned out!! (There are recipe links in the Changing the way we do things post)