Monday, May 14, 2012

I'm crunchy and I like it

Yes, indeed, that is raw milk. I’m becoming “crunchy” in my old age. It's a pleasant surprise. You see, I had a faint distain for "food au naturel” born out of my experience working in a health food store as a teen. It was my first honest-to-goodness collect-a-paycheck job. It was memorable, but mostly not in a good way. More about that some other time. I will tell you this--the word ‘carob’ still makes me twitchy. And don't get me started on brown-hued goat cheese (shudder). Moving on…


Thanks to my daughter-in-law Niamh, I’ve learned to make homemade yogurt, yay! And I vow never to buy store bought, overly sweet pudding-like yogurt again.


The very first time I tasted authentic yogurt was in the 1st grade on a school bus. The girl sitting next to me popped open her lunch box and said, “Look! This is yogurt. Wanna taste it?” I did. The taste was strangely amazing. So was this little girl beside me who shared, with a complete stranger, a taste of her school lunch. I guess that’s what you call random.


We must have been in different grades, because aside from sitting on the bus together, I never saw her. I vaguely remember her telling me that she hadn’t been born in the States, and I recall that she had exotic looks that I admired. She also told me she came from a wealthy family. "Yeah, me too", I lied. And I think she believed me until I described the marble fountain that we had in our living room. That's the thing about tall tales - it's hard to know when you're six how tall is too tall.


So wherever you are, school bus friend, thank you for broadening my culinary horizons. And thank you Niamh for the know-how, and bringing back a nice memory.


Making yogurt at home is incredibly easy. You don’t need any fancy equipment apart from a thermometer to keep from overheating the milk. A candy thermometer worked very well for me. If you have a pot, a colandar, a tea towel, milk (doesn't have to be raw), and some yogurt culture, you can make your own Greek-style yogurt. The taste is tangy, sour in a good way. There's nothing like a bowl full with honey drizzled over it. Yum! The directions on the yogurt culture package are pretty straightforward, but I’ll be happy to email anyone who’s interested with more information.

My next adventure - kombucha tea - woot!

23 comments:

Kirsten said...

How cool is that Jodi! I didn't realise how little equipment you needed to make it - we've only every 'made our own' using Esi-Yo mix from the supermarket (as you can tell, not so authentic). It looks absolutely delicious - well done :)

Ron said...

When I make mine I take the pot out of the oven and place it in the fridge over night. It will continue to thicken. Then I drain the whey the next day. I think Charla said you have to use new culture if you are using unpasteurized milk as the milk and yogurt bacteria will fight. I use pasteurized milk and am on at least generation 9

Joy Lake said...

Marble fountain? Hahaha, ok Estella Havisham! I love your creative mind. The yogurt looks great too.

Nancy Franson said...

Okay, I'm probably never going to make homemade yogurt. But I am kind of intrigued by that exotic looking girl on the school bus!

Abby Roh said...

I'm experimenting with fermented foods too! so much fun! trying almond milk yogurt, kombucha, and sunflower seed cheese!

David Rupert said...

I had no idea. Yogurt has one of those uncertain textures that you dont want to ask where it comes from. Like cottage cheese

Ostriches Look Funny said...

I told my first grade friend I had buried treasure in my back yard. It was half lie, half hope. Well, I'm still friends with her and SHE STILL HAS NOT LET IT GO.
the end.
Enjoy your gurt.

Southern Gal said...

And then sourdough bread?

Quotidian Life said...

If you need a granola recipe (using yogurt soaked oats) to go with your homemade yogurt, check out my blog (a few posts back). Yogurt and granola is our daily bread. Our purchased yogurt in Jordan is so good that I haven't ventured to make my own, but your post is motivating me to try making it this summer while we're in the States as it is hard to switch back to US brands.

Rachel said...

This sounds good especially with honey! Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Love your story :)Very cool. Could you send me a recipe?
I've been making homeade Keifer- cultured milk. I wonder if it's the same culture needed to make yogurt because it ends up tasting sour and a lot like plain yogurt.
Joan

Leslie said...

I had a Japanese friend who made the BEST yogurt. But just a word of caution about raw milk: yes, it does have all those good enzymes that pasteurization removes, but it also carries with it a higher risk for TB. And TB is on the rise again. Back in the days of un-pasteurized (raw) milk, the cows were regularly tuberculin tested. And those who tested positive were, of course, culled from the herd. I don't know how well the farmers are doing nowadays in that regard.

Jodi said...

Les, thanks. My son and his family drink raw milk all the time. The key is knowing the farm you deal with. Are they clean, are the animals treated well, etc.? In PA, the farms have to pass state and local inspections. I found my milk at a supermarket in Lancaster. It came with a brochure of info on the farm and the family who provides it. Thank you for caring. xx

Jodi said...

Quodian life, I will search your blog. Your recipes have always been good.

Jodi said...

David, yogurt and cottage cheese I'm okay with. Bologna, love it, but don't think about where it comes from.

Jodi said...

Abby Roh, sunflower seed cheese? Do tell!

Jodi said...

Kirsten, Ron, JoAnn, and Nancy, Joy, and Rachel, thanks for the encouragement.

Jodi said...

Southern Gal, I have been making the sourdough! I also found another recipe for the starter using rye flour and pinapple juice. Works like a charm.

Leslie said...

Good, I'm glad to know that your raw milk comes from healthy cows!!!

Connie Smiley said...

I love your stories, all the better because you're willing to tell on yourself (your six-year-old-self, that is). The yogurt looks and sounds delicious.

Sara said...

Yummy. Once I discovered plain Greek style yogurt, I could never abide by that sweetened flavored stuff again! I love my yogurt thick and creamy and tangy, with honey. Always heard it is very easy to make at home...maybe I'll try this one of these days.

Amy said...

Love the back story! I made yogurt for awhile. . . and now I'm so sad that my headaches are connected to dairy. Won't be making it again. But it does taste so good! And it's much better than store bought. Now this tea you mention. . . VERY interested:)

Kim said...

Good for you....and you will love
kombucha, especially with summer right around the corner.....it is the Bomb!!

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