YEA - The Yogurt Maker arrived today!!
I was excited to see the big box on the porch, & took it over to my daughter's to unwrap . . . then home again with my granddaughers to have a 'play date' (ie: 'let mom & dad watch a movie for grown ups!) & to make some yogurt!
We went to the Natural Food store to pick up some Agar Agar (seaweed to help the coconut milk jell) & home again to fix dinner, wash the jars, & then make the first batch.
I ground the agar agar flakes in my trusty seed mill, which broke it up some, & emptied two of these cans of coconut milk into a glass saucepan to heat (just above 110* - warm on the wrist) with the agar agar.
I LOVE Greek Gods yogurt, so got a small one to use as my starter. The 'live & active' cultures include S Thermophilus, Lactobacilis Bulgaricus, L. Acidophilus, Bifidobacterium, & L.Casei. (for a dairy free starter, I could have used the S O Delicious Cultured Coconut Milk, or the contents of dairy-free acidophilus capsules.)
After taking the pan off the heat, I put ~ 1/2 C of the coconut milk into a glass measuring cup, & added several Tbsp of the Greek Gods yogurt, then returned the mix into the pan, & stired some more.
Two cans of Coconut milk filled 6 of the 7 small glass jars. I usually add ~ 1/2 C of filtered water to a tin of coconut milk (transfer to a quart glass jar as soon as I've opened it) to make it a more 'milk-like' consistency, but I hadn't for this batch of yogurt.
To fill the last jar, I heated ~ 1/8 C water with 1/2 tsp of the agar agar, & let that simmer a few minutes, then added coconut milk from the fridge, & a tsp of Dalmatia Orange-Fig spread & a tsp of honey to the milk as it was warming. After I took the pan off the heat & let it cool, I added a spoonful of the yogurt, & stirred before pouring it into the last jar.
For the next batch, I'll simmer agar agar in a 1/2 cup of water at the beginning, then add the coconut milk. I intend to experiment with using tapioca starch (already a powder) - simmering the starch in water first. And I can culture futer batches with some of my own yogurt!
The black bar on top of the lid indicates the time the yogurt should be done - then it should cool in the fridge for an hour before eating (ha!)
Within the next few days the kefir 'grains' should arrive, & I'll begin making some sugar water kefir.
On Sunday I attended a wonderful Gluten free BD party with my daughter & granddaughters, & had a brief conversation with a friend who's made water kefir in the past, & said she really likes it! (here's a tutorial on making Water Kefir)
I also found this blog - & happened on a post on water kefir!!
I look forward to these new adventures, & to experimenting with different adaptogen herbs during the second ferment, & experimenting with the milk kefir grains. They culture at room temp, & are a more liquid 'product' than Yogurt.
What adventures have captured your fancy this week?