Making Yogurt

With instant food in short supply i needed to try to make as much of my food from scratch as possible. I bought a yogurt maker and a bread maker. Unfortunately the entire country had a hankering for bread so the bread machines were on back order until the end of august. However, nobody seemed to have my same idea about the yogurt maker, so that arrived fairly quickly. It came with 7 jars, a programmable heated base, and a lid. i had great difficulty getting my hands on dairy-free cultures so originally i didn’t put any fruit in the middle jar and used that yogurt as my starter for the next batch the following week. Eventually i got my hands on some capsules of probiotics and i could just open a capsule and dump it directly into the box of milk i intended to use to make the yogurt. Now, i am allergic to dairy, so the yogurt i was making began with hemp milk and then later with oat milk when the health food store in town began carrying it. We had an arrangement where i could call them on the phone, tell them what i wanted to buy, give my credit card number, and then they would bag the items and leave them outside the door while i sat watching in the car. When the clerk had gone inside i then retrieved the bags, put them in my car, and drove away. Often times she waved to me as she was leaving the bags and i waved back from behind the windshield. It was a human interaction void of fear, friendly even, that warmed my cold dead heart in a way it hadn’t been stirred in months.

So i began with a base of hemp milk or oat milk, depending on what was available. I emptied a capsule of the probiotics into the box of “mylk”, replaced the cap, and shook it vigorously. i would cut up whatever kind of fruit i had on hand and place 5 pieces at the bottom of each jar. Then i would pour the mylk over it until each jar was full. I would place the jars in the yogurt-making device with their lids off, place the top of the yogurt-maker on, and set the device to heat for 15 hours. 15 hours later i had “yogurt”…non-dairy yogurt that is. Because it was non-dairy, it didn’t thicken, but it tasted slightly sour exactly as yogurt did. The fruit would become soggy and its flavors would diffuse into the yogurt. I let the contents of the fedex box decide what flavor yogurt i would have each week. One unexpected side effect of making “yogurt” at home; i fixed my gut bacteria. I was finally breaking down the food i was consuming thoroughly and efficiently. The probiotics i normally bought were not available, as they were imported from japan, so this side effect proved to be a rather useful one.

My first batch was made when i was still able to make trips to the walmart and had access to frozen fruit. I bought a bag of frozen strawberries.

There was no available counter space in the tiny house. The yogurt maker was placed on the floor behind the rocking chair when in use. It was strange making food on the floor in the back corner of the house, but it sure was tasty.

The strawberries melted into the yogurt drink and infused the hemp milk with strawberry flavor.

It was literally the best yogurt drink i had ever tasted in my life. I made a batch every time i had two days off and i ate one with a spoon every morning before going to work. After august i would make gluten free bread as well and i would have “yogurt” and “bread” for breakfast every morning.

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