Valentines

Happy Valentines Day!

Is it possible to have too many Valentines? Because I have four.

  1. The Bearded Husband–my rock, the foundation to our family, who makes me swoon, and supports and even joins in to my eco-manacle ways.
  2. Thing One– My favorite tiny human.
  3. Thing Two– My favorite tiny human.
  4. The favorite planet, Earth.

While I’ll be showing my affection to each of my Valentines, I thought I would quickly share a low-waste Valentine project that #2 and #3 could share at school, but also treads lightly on #4.  Continue reading

Make it Yourself: Yogurt

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One side effect of avoiding plastic packaging is that sometimes you have to make things from scratch.  I enjoy cooking and creating so I really don’t mind making things from scratch, if I can possibly find the time (which is rare these days because my two little guys keep me pretty busy).

We typically go through a lot of yogurt. Yogurt with fruit or granola, in smoothies and sauces. But yogurt is really hard to find not in plastic. There is one local brand of yogurt that is sold in glass quart jars. It’s delicious and organic, but SO pricey. So I thought, it can’t be that hard to make yogurt, can it??? It turns out it’s not very hard at all.

There is a lot of info out there about yogurt science, cultures, timing, temperature, etc. But ultimately, it’s pretty simple: heat some milk, add a little bit of yogurt, let it sit in a warm place, and voila – you’ve got yogurt!

I did some research and reading, but ultimately used the technique described on one of my favorite cooking websites, The Kitchn.

My notes:

  • I used local organic non-homogenized 2% milk (plus a ½ cup of plain organic yogurt)
  • I used a probe thermometer with a long cord (like this one), so I could monitor the temperature periodically without opening the oven (but, to be honest, the temperature was a little off and it still came out great!)
  • My yogurt sat for about 6 hours (which produced a thick yet pourable consistency and mildly tangy taste)
  • Don’t forget to save a bit of your yogurt for the next batch!

What have you made from scratch lately???