Making my own yogurt
Remember when I proclaimed that I hate yogurt? As it turns out, I hate storebought yogurt. Shortly after I wrote that post, I found a method of making homemade yogurt using lowfat milk and a small container of yogurt as a starter. I don’t know why it tastes better to me and doesn’t bother my stomach. After all, it’s the same exact culture. It makes no sense, but I’m not arguing because it’s half the cost of buying the cheapest Greek yogurt, and it only takes a half hour of hands-on time. I use this method every week like this:
- I use a half gallon of generic 1% milk.
- For a starter, I use a small, 6-ounce generic Greek yogurt every 3 weeks. In between, I use about a half a cup of my own yogurt as a starter.
- For incubation, I turn on my oven to Warm for 1-2 minutes, shut it off, put the milk (with yogurt starter and wrapped in a towel) in the oven, shut the door, and turn the light on. I have the best results when it incubates for 14-15 hours, so I do this overnight.
- I drain the yogurt through a coffee-filter-lined wire strainer for a couple of hours and end up with 32 ounces of Greek-style yogurt.
Between the yogurt, granola, and chomping our way through an awesome weekly CSA produce share, I asked JG at one point, “Is this the year we become hippies?” Perhaps.
Listening to more audio books
Now that my drive to work is much longer, I’ve stocked up on books on CD from the library to pass the time. These are the ones I’ve enjoyed the most in the past month of commutes:
- Quiet, by Susan Cain
- Left Neglected, by Lisa Genova
- The Professor and the Madman, by Simon Winchester
- In my CD player: The Wednesday Wars, by Gary D. Schmidt
- Waiting in my door compartment: In Cold Blood, by Truman Capote, and How to Win Friends & Influence People, by Dale Carnegie (my interest was piqued after listening to Quiet)
On my library list to reserve in the future:
- The Poisoner’s Handbook, by Deborah Blum
- Poser, by Claire Dederer
- A Few Seconds of Panic, by Stefan Fatsis
- The Reason for God, by Timothy Keller
- Grace (Eventually), by Anne Lamott
- In the Garden of Beasts, Isaac’s Storm, and Thunderstruck, by Erik Larson
- The Return of the Prodigal Son, by Henri Nouwen
- Not Becoming My Mother, by Ruth Reichl
Any audio recommendations out there?
Stockpiling sugar cookie dough
I signed on to make sugar cookie favors for my SIL’s bridal shower in July (hearts with yellow and gray polka dots), and I’m planning on bringing patriotic cookies to the beach, per usual. It’s hard to estimate how much dough each project will take so I’m making a batch of dough every weekend to prepare. As long as the butter is soft, it takes me about 20 minutes, including clean-up, and when it’s all said and done, I’ll have 6 batches at my disposal. The freezer is slowly filling with pale yellow, plastic-wrapped discs of dough, lying in wait to be cut, baked, decorated, and devoured.