Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Homemade Yogurt

Homemade Yogurt

I have thought about homemade yogurt for a long time.  Thought about it and done nothing.  A few weeks ago I decided to stop just thinking and I got out my crockpot (because I was told this was the easiest way to do it) and…I made cheese.  I took a deep breath and went to make something else. Weeks later, I tried again with a different method.  This was easy and perfect, needing nothing more than my stovetop and oven (which is good because my crockpot has since cracked in half).  I am not sure I will ever buy yogurt again.
1 gallon milk
½ cup live cultured plain yogurt
Pour 1 gallon of milk into a large stock pot and heat over medium low heat until the milk is 180 F.
Kill the heat and let the milk cool down in the range of 115 F to 95 F.  Add ½ cup of live cultured yogurt to a bit of your cooled milk, mix until thoroughly combined and then mix into the big batch of milk.
Pour into desired storage containers, either glass or plastic works.  I used a couple of large yogurt containers that I had saved.  Put the soon to be yogurt into the oven (not on) and turn your oven light on.  Let the yogurt sit in the oven with the light on for 12 hours.  Mine turned out a bit mild for my taste, so I will test next time if letting is sit a little longer will produce a more tangy product.
When the culturing time is finished, move your yogurt to the refrigerator to cool.
Want something a little thicker? Add 2-3 cups per gallon of powdered milk to up the protein content.  This will make for a thicker yogurt.  Add the powder before you cook the milk.  I need to test and see if using whey protein works the same.
Like I said, the yogurt I made is not as tangy as I like so, after further reading, I found out you can culture your yogurt up to 24 hours to increase the tang.  Also, if you let it incubate at closure to 100F you will get better microbial growth.
I can’t wait to make the next batch.
Thank you for reading,
Sarah McTernen

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Fog Behind Pear Blossoms

Fog Behind Pear Blossoms

When I started to make jewelry, I often received questions about being done with photography.  My answer is always, no, I am not done with photography.

Photography is of a moment.  Sometimes you can make those moments, but it requires patience.  Patience is harder to come by when toting around three children. 

Speaking of which...I'll be right back.

Okay, I'm back...what were we talking about?  Oh yeah, three children.

This morning I woke up to fog.  Fog Behind Pear Blossoms and I was excited to take photographs.  If I was just me, I would have thrown on some close, grabbed my camera and headed out to catch the Puyallup river cloaked in fog and sunrise.  It is not that it is impossible, but I know by the time I got them all ready, my motivation would be waning.

I have not let go of photography, just as I have not let go of writing.  One day I will have my words published.  One day I will...

just a minute...I'll be right back.

Photography is a moment, and when that moment is gone, it doesn't repeat itself.  If you are not there with camera in hand, looking through the lens, it will pass you by, leaving you with nothing but regret and images close, but not magic.

Thank you for your interest in my work,

Sarah McTernen (Photography) (Jewelry)

Thursday, April 4, 2013

A World of Good Intentions

A world of good intentions.  That is what I had about posting here this year.  They all went out the window when my three year old went into surgery in February.  Our journey with Hip Dysplasia took us to the hospital and through surgery into a big purple cast and brought us to the latest stage of a less big purple brace.  I'll post more about the journey later, but I wanted you to know I was thinking of you all as I slowly get back into the swing of things. 

Best wishes,

Sarah McTernen