I love these pictures of us. I was five and he was about ten. Yes, I started first grade when I was five. I wanted to go to school and they let me. Hey, it was the Seventies. If a kid wanted to go to school they let them go! Wasn’t Whit’s hair gorgeous? Funny thing is, Luke looks just like him in that picture, and Kell looks just like me.
My family eats a lot of yogurt. Generally, we each eat a cup for breakfast. In the summer I make refrigerator oatmeal which also has yogurt in it. So yeah, lots of yogurt. Lots of money. Being the frugal cook that I am I’ve often thought of making my own, especially since I actually prefer to give my children whole milk as much as possible and whole milk yogurt is almost impossible to find. But I thought I needed a special machine, or some fancy single use equipment. (For the record, I HATE single use appliances.) Nope. I came across this comment over on my online crackhouse, known to most of you as Apartment Therapy, (It might have been The Kitchn, menopause has destroyed my memory)and was immediately intrigued by how easy it sounded. And when you think of it, given how ubiquitous yogurt is in that part of world, it makes sense that they wouldn’t have some fiddly recipe.
Frankly, I learned to make yogurt with a friend from Afghanistan and it was a super-easy, no-monitoring, no-stress way to do it.
I just put whole milk in a heavy pot (I use a LeCreuset dutch oven) until bubbles slightly break on the edge (~just before boiling), let it cool “until the tip of your pinky, when dipped, feels warm to the touch” (quite technical) – stir in some plain yogurt (few scoops/ about 1/2 c) and then I just wrap the whole thing in a huge bath towel and let it sit in the oven (off) for the day or overnight. It’s always worked for me – maybe if I were using raw milk, I’d use a “real” recipe to be sure I wasn’t throwing it down the drain later on!
I made a gallon of yogurt following this recipe. I put in two containers of yogurt since I was making so much. And I was amazed that I actually got yogurt and it was delicious!!! It’s just a bit more runny than store-bought because they put gelatin in it. If you prefer a thicker consistency, like Greek yogurt then you just strain it in cheesecloth, this is also how you make yogurt cheese. I like the runnier consistency for refrigerator oatmeal. Next time I’ll let it sit longer. I was anxious, so I got up at like five in the morning because I was terrified it would go bad. The longer it sits the tangier it gets.
The kids love it because they got to do their own add-ins. Applesauce, granola, honey, maple syrup, preserves, fresh fruit, whatever suits your fancy, for just pennies.
And there you go, nearly a month’s worth of yogurt for about less than $10!! Yay me.
Question, how many of y’all (readers and authors) use Audible or some other audiobook system? I’ve pretty much reached my saturation point of learning software, and the thought of having to hire readers and such makes my eyes cross. I’m seriously unable to can at this point, but if I have a lot of readers who like audiobooks it might be worth the trouble. Hit me up in the comments to let me know, and if you use something other than Audible let me know that too. Thanks.
Whit and I were discussing some upcoming projects I’m working on, including a Christmas serial with Lisa. (I just love saying Christmas serial. It sounds like “cereal” you only get at Christmas time. I imagine it looking like Rice Krispies with little red marshmallow stars and santas.) Anyway, we started brainstorming the covers for the serial (There will be five BTW. Starting around Thanksgiving. Watch this space for updates!) which is what we do, usually months out, and laughing about what a PITA the Superstar cover was. Superstar, the book, is very near and dear to me. As I’ve said many times before, I was a black rocker chick and it was crucial to me that there be an UNAMBIGUOUSLY BLACK WOMAN on the cover of this book. As a young woman, sure I wanted to sleep with Robert Plant (and really, who didn’t?), but I wanted to BE Jimmy Page. So this was personal.
Finding a stock picture of a black woman with braids, playing a guitar and seriously rocking out was damned near impossible. Most of the pictures of women with guitars are all sex kittenish (WTF is UP with that? It’s like those half naked women with guns. Just effing annoying.) An axewoman should look badass, not fucktoy. It took me over a year of endlessly scanning stock sites. When I found this one, I bought it on the spot. Then, after all that, Whit didn’t like it. He went through all the technical issues he had with the photo while my eyes glazed over which is what happens when he starts talking about masks and shadows. Usually, when he doesn’t like a photo he won’t work with it. Keeping in mind he is working for free, most of the time I don’t complain, but in this case, I did. And, as usual, he produced what I think of as one our best covers. And yes, I know I ALWAYS say that, but this time I’m serious. One of these days when I finally get my office the way I want it, this one is going up on the wall. I love it that much.