We have all heard the nursery rhyme about Little Miss Muffet.
Little Miss Muffet
Sat on a Tuffet
Eating her curds and whey
Along came a spider
And sat down beside her
And frightened Miss Muffet away!
Curds and whey are yogurt or cottage cheese. Whey, when it is separated from the yogurt or cottage cheese is a very healthful medium for natural fermentation of foods. For more information on this, get a copy of Nourishing Traditions. It is full of information on healthful fermentation of foods that is a lost art in our society. In this post, I will attempt to show you how to make yogurt, the first step in separating your curds from your whey. We will then use the whey in many different recipes that I will blog. Please be patient with me as this is new so I am experimenting somewhat but what I have tried thus far, I really like.
4 cups milk ( I use pasteurized, non-homoginized)
1/4 to 1/2 cup full fat unflavored yogurt
You will need a thermometer as pictured here http://www.chefsresource.com/taylor-analog-instant-read-dial-thermometer.html, however, I think I bought mine at Wal-Mart.
Bring your milk to a temperature of 180 degrees on stovetop. Next, cool it down to 110 degrees. I do this by submursing the pan in cool water that is being held in the sink. When it arrives at 110 degrees, I stir in the starter yogurt. I then pour the whole thing into the yogurt maker. It holds the temperature at a constant 100 degrees, the ideal temperature for bacterial multiplication in yogurt.
If you would like directions to make yogurt in your slow cooker, you can find them here http://myblessedhome.blogspot.com/2007/06/how-to-make-yogurt.html#article.
When you use your yogurt, be sure to hold back 1/2 cup for your next batch.
So you ask, what do you do with all the yogurt, since you cannot buy only 1/2 cup? I put mine in ice trays and freeze it. When it comes out of the ice trays, I store it in ziplock bags in the freezer. When I accidentally use my starter or my yogurt seems a bit too runny for my taste, I just begin from 'scratch' next time, using 3 frozen cubes of yogurt.
Genesis 18:8 He took curds and milk and the calf which he has prepared and place it before them; and he was standing by them under the tree as they ate.
Kinda neat that our sister Sarah prepared a similar dish.
Blessings for you and your curds and whey. Tomorrow I will show you how to separate this wonderful stuff into cream cheese and whey.