Make Yogurt At Home (it’s easy)

Homemade yogurt and berries for breakfast.I’ve been making yogurt at home. It’s easier than a lot of people think and cost effective! A quart of milk from Trader Joe’s is about $1. A quart of yogurt is > $2. Plus, I think it tastes better without all that funky stuff a lot of commercial yogurt has to keep it thicker and more uniform.

You don’t need a fancy yogurt maker or any other gadget other than 1 pot (although 2 would be better), 1 food thermometer, a spatula or wooden spoon, and some glass jars.

The ingredients are simple:

  • milk: I use 2% milk. Since I’m the only one who eats yogurt in my household, I find that just the 1qt carton is enough for each batch I make.
  • 3tbs commercial yogurt: This is just to start your yogurt off your first time. Once you make your own yogurt, save a bit each time to start the next batch. I’m not sure if it matters, but I try to find an organic, plain, unsweetened yogurt which has the least amount of ingredients in it. But most of all make sure to get one with live, active cultures in it.


  • Pour milk into pot and put it on the stove on medium heat. Stir often to avoid the bottom getting burned.
  • Bring the milk up to 90C. That’s the point right before it gets frothy on top. Make sure it doesn’t boil over or froth.
  • Once the milk reaches 90C, turn off the heat.
  • Let milk cool down to 50C.
  • Stir in 3tbs yogurt. Stir it well to make sure it’s distributed evenly. Use a whisk if you have one.
  • Pour the milk into glass jars and put the top on, or cover with plastic wrap.
  • Store in a warm place to incubate, undisturbed for 6-8 hours.
  • Put into fridge after incubation period.

Some tips I’ve picked up along the way:

  • Using 2 pots as a double boiler is easier. Put the smaller pot inside the larger one, fill the larger one with water, and pour milk into the smaller one. You still need to stir, but less occasionally because it’s harder for the milk to burn in a double boiler.
  • If it’s cold, a good incubation area is the oven. Preheat the oven to the lowest setting (mine goes down to 170F) while cooking the milk. Turn it off after it’s preheated. Put the jars in there with the oven light on and the door closed.
  • A funnel makes it easy to pour yogurt into glass jars.
  • The yogurt isn’t that tart right after incubation. Putting it in the fridge overnight makes it perfect.

Okra Salad

fresh okra dressed with a simple soy and yuzu sauce for breakfast.This okra salad is so simple, it doesn’t even count as a recipe. I wanted to use up the handful of okra we got from our CSA box last week and I didn’t want to do a whole lot of cooking. For breakfast, I washed the okra, dropped it into a pan of water, brought it up to a boil, and let it boil for 1-2 minutes. Then I rinsed and drained the okra in cold water and cut it into rough 1/4 inch slices.

I ran out of ponzu, so I just made my own with some rice vinegar, bottled yuzu juice, and splash of soy sauce. To give the dressing a little more of a kick, I mixed in a small dab of yuzu kusho (pepper paste). I poured the dressing onto the chopped okra, gave it a little toss and that was it.

The yuzu flavor really gave the okra a citrusy, refreshing taste without masking the sweet flavor of the fresh okra.

Super Productive Night Time!

APC New CuresOn some nights, when I get home from work, I just want to veg out and play video games, or if I’m feeling especially lazy, just watch TV. Tonight was not one of those nights.

I don’t know what got into me. Maybe the rushing “oh crap, gotta finish this up before I leave” half hour before leaving work revitalized me because I got a lot more done when I got home than I expected.

I made pasta from scratch: 1 part unbleached white flour, 1 part semolina flour, a pinch of salt, and enough water to form a dough. I re-potted my newest basil plant into my bigger basil planter. I got 1 hour of SFIV ‘training’ in. Oh yeah, did I mention I’m going to be in a Street Fighter tournament? I’m kind of scared. Maybe it’s not good that I picked such a low HP character, Chun Li.

Then I made corn salad with fresh corn on the cob. And then I swept the floor.

Ridiculous how much I managed to pack into a few hours. It makes me feel better about those nights where I’m just lollygagging the time away.