Friday, April 13, 2012

Home-Made Yoghurt Here in Cape Town

Looks so much better in a jar.
As longtime readers know, I used to make my yoghurt in a slow cooker. Making yoghurt is very easy, and it's a good way to save a little money while producing something tasty and wholesome. A couple of things make it more difficult here in Cape Town.
  1. We don't have a slow cooker.
  2. I haven't been able to find milk in glass jars, or really, good milk in general. One major incentive for homemade yoghurt is no waste and high quality yoghurt, but in this case, I have to throw away the milk sachets and I'm not sure of the quality of the milk.
  3. I wasn't super sure of the yoghurt starter options, either. Most had stabilizers, etc.
  4. We have been consuming much less dairy than we did in the U.S. (primarily because fresh fruit is so affordable here), so I've been unsure of how much milk/yoghurt to buy. 

There are many great tutorials for stove-top yoghurt making online, so I won't reproduce one here. I'll just let you know why I decided to make yoghurt, given the issues above:
  1. Stovetop yoghurt turned out to be very easy to make- just as easy as slow cooker yoghurt.
  2. I'll keep looking and asking for milk in jars (maybe even raw milk, one day!) but in the meantime, the amount of plastic used in a sachet is much less than a yoghurt container. I'm also just buying the same amount of milk every week (about 2 liters), but turning one liter into yoghurt. The yoghurt I make has only 2 ingredients, milk and a little yoghurt starter, so I think the quality is automatically better than most store-bought yoghurts. Fruit and Veg City actually doesn't sell full-cream plain yoghurt, so I'd have to make an extra stop during the week to get store-bought yoghurt.
  3. Finding myself trapped in Woolworths (which for some reason I find terrifying), I bought their plain yoghurt and felt like it was a great starter option. From now on, I just use a little of the previous week's yoghurt.
  4. Not sure how to deal with low consumption, except by knowing that the yoghurt is there and should be used. Yoghurt is healthier than just drinking milk, and we've been enjoying ours. 

  • The yoghurt has a gentle honey flavor because I put a little honey in the pot before heating the milk, ostensibly to prevent the milk from scalding. 
  • The cost of 1L of yoghurt is about R6, vs. R20 for the same amount of store-bought yoghurt. R14: enough for a drink of some kind!

Curtains are up. Made by hand, while watching movies, I think.

Other curtain, made of sacking material. It hangs straight down to cover the fridge and a shelf that I am still going to varnish. There's a glimpse of Eug's beer making equipment here. Encouragement for you to visit. Encouragement for me to hurry up and give birth so I can drink (a tiny, tiny amount of) alcohol again (sorry Tiny blob).
I am most excited about stealing bits of other people's plants and trying to grow them. I know this isn't really how you reproduce lavender (you're supposed to root in "rooting mixture") but I thought I'd give them a couple days in the kitchen first.


leah said...

nice curtain! good job!

emily said...

After the 1st trimester the benefits of B vitamins in (a glass of) homebrew greatly outweigh the risks. During breastfeeding this is even more so. Often, more traditional (old school) drs (and my MIL:) will recommend a rich beer (like unfiltered brew) a day to nursing mothers who are having trouble with production or energy. Drink (quality libations) with (limited) abandon!

Concrete Gardener said...

Hi Em,

I haven't drunk alcohol since before I was pregnant with Noah, but I am looking forward to drinking a little after Tiny Blob is born, as I'm not as concerned that small amounts will have any negative affects on my breast milk.

I'm not as sure about pregnancy: I'd love to hear more. I've erred on the side of caution up to now. Which is interesting, because it's been easier to abstain from things like wine, certain raw foods, etc., than to remember to eat well and take care of myself, which is probably just as important for the baby.