Sunday, December 7, 2008


As I write this, it’s 81 degrees in my bedroom, which is significantly cooler than, what I imagine is at least 10 degrees cooler than the study and about 5 degrees cooler than the kitchen. Outside I imagine it’s about 5 degrees and very windy. [Editorial note: This was written last night. Today at church the boilers weren't working and so the sanctuary got it's first glimpse of heat an hour after I got there. I was suddenly missing my tropical condo.] 

But that’s not what I’m really writing about. Recently I’ve been doing a lot of cooking. I guess I take after my dad a bit in that writing is somewhat soothing and relaxing for me. This does, I know, make me weird. I actually banned myself from cooking this week in order to get some work done. That was a successful move, so I may have to repeat the ban in the future.

The first of my recent culinary adventures was yogurt. The recipe that inspired me was a blog post by the folks at White on Rice Couple They had a recipe for Vietnamese Yogurt which made yogurt making seem easier than it had seemed before. They use sweetened condensed milk which made the yogurt a bit too sweet for my tastes, but nice and creamy.

If you’re really interested, you can go to their site, but the basic gist is mix sweetened condensed milk and water. Then mix milk and live yogurt cultures (translation: already made yogurt). Then mix them all together. In the mean time, heat up water in pots and heat up canning jars (I ended up using 9 half pint jars). Then pour the yogurt into the canning jars and turn off the heat to the pots. Then place the jars in the pots (uncovered) and fill the pot til the water is higher than the yogurt. Then place a cloth over the pot and wait until the water cools (this will take FOREVER…as in 2-3 hours) Be vigilant. You don’t want the water to be cool for too long. Then put the heat back on and heat the water. Then turn it off again. And wait, again. When the water is cool, the yogurt should be mostly set. So you put the lids on the canning jars and throw it in the fridge. (Well, not literally. That would be super messy.) They’ll set up more in the fridge.

So that’s it folks. That’s how you can make yogurt. At least one way. For future adventures, I probably won’t make this recipe, since I prefer my yogurt a little less sweet. It was really good mixed with pomegranate since the pomegranate increased the tang while needing the extra sugar. I also mixed in some cranberry-orange relish that I’d made pre-Thanksgiving. If that hadn’t had sugar in it, it might have been perfect too. I’m a big fan of cranberry. I bought three bags of cranberries a few weeks ago. I made scones and muffins and relish and froze a bag. Delish.

So folks, that is my story about making yogurt. Sometime I’ll write about making bagels, but not tonight. 


Reid said...

First post!!!!

Simon said...

This was extremely interesting and informative. I have never made yogurt. It sounds really work-intensive -- that part about being vigilant will kill me, it always does with cooking -- but fun nevertheless!

Katie said...

I basically just set a timer for 30 minutes and checked it when the buzzer went off. I think that that is close enough. I might have hurried it along too.

I am about the least vigilant cook I know. I believe that all measurements are approximations, including in baking. I also insist on using salted butter. Cause it just tastes like grease if it's not salty.