I just can’t get enough pumpkin during the fall. This Pumpkin Pie Smoothie tastes just like a pumpkin pie! What is even better is that this Pumpkin Pie Smoothie contains only 1.63 grams of fat and nearly 10 grams of protein! Now that is a drink you can feel good about. Maybe I will serve Pumpkin Pie Smoothies this Thanksgiving instead of pie.
1/2 Banana, frozen
1/3 Cup Pumpkin Puree
1/3 Cup Plain Yogurt
1/2 Cup Milk
1/8 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice
5 Ice Cubes
Place all ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth.
Yield: 1 Serving (about 2 Cups)
Making your own yogurt is one of the coolest things you can do in the kitchen. It takes some time, but it’s well worth it. Yogurt is so cheap to make. Lets say you got a great deal on milk and yogurt…88 cents for a half gallon and $1 for a small container of plain yogurt. You’ve only spent $1.88 and made a half gallon of yogurt. And what’s even better is that you can make more yogurt from your homemade yogurt! I know, it’s mind blowing! You are going to kick yourself for buying store bought yogurt all these years. There are a million different methods for making yogurt, but it’s all the same basic procedure. I typically use whole milk, but use whatever you like. Enjoy your delicious yogurt. Flavor it any way you like. Chloe’s favorite way to eat yogurt is with a spoonful of strawberry jelly mixed and some colorful sprinkles on top!
Half Gallon Milk (1%, 2% or Whole)
2-3 Tablespoons Plain Yogurt
1 Large Pot
4 Pint Sized Mason Jars with rings and seals (used seals are OK since we aren’t sealing them)
Thermometer (candy and meat thermometers both work)
Divide the yogurt between the 4 mason jars. Leave on the counter so the yogurt can warm to room temperature.
Turn the light on in your oven. Leave the oven off though.
Pour the half gallon of milk into the large pot. Heat over medium heat until it reaches 185°F. Remove from heat and place the pot in a sink full of ice water. Let it cool until it reaches 110°F. Remove from the ice water so it doesn’t cool any more.
Carefully ladle the warm milk into the 4 mason jars. Place the seals on the jars and loosely screw on the lids.
Place in the oven (with the oven light on) and leave in there for 7 hours. Remove from oven, stir and refrigerate overnight.
- Don’t use your best pot for heating the milk because it could warp when you put it in ice water.
- If you are afraid you will scald the milk, heat it in a double boiler. It works just the same.
- This can also be made if you don’t have a thermometer…Or if you keep breaking thermometers like I do. Just heat the milk until it’s really steamy and hot, then cool it until you can keep a finger in it without burning it. Very official and exact!
- You can stir the yogurt right into the milk if you want to keep it in the pot you heated it in. Then put it in other containers after the 7 hour waiting period. I just like to have it separated out and ready to go.
- Sterilize to your hearts content. Sterilize the pot, spoons, ladle, jars, lids, seals, thermometer and anything else that will touch the milk and yogurt. A great method for sterilizing is to boil for 10 minutes.
- Make Greek yogurt by straining out some of the whey. Use cheese cloth or a tea towel to strain it.
- Make yogurt in your slow cooker or microwave using the same procedure.
- It takes some time for the milk to heat, but it cools very quickly.
- Try not to move the milk around too much after you add the yogurt.
- You get your yogurt all ready to culture in the oven for 7 hours, then realize your dinner needs to be cooked in the oven. Oh no!! Don’t worry…just grab another mason jar, fill it with water and heat for a couple minutes in the microwave. Leave it in the microwave and put your jars of yogurt in the microwave too. Close the door so the heat doesn’t escape. I like to attach a note to my microwave door that yogurt is trying to culture inside and not to open it.
Have you made yogurt before? What method did you use? Do you have any tips or questions?
Yield: Half Gallon Yogurt
This is an Indian dish called “Murg Dahi”, or Yogurt Chicken. It sounds really odd to cook with yogurt, but this turned out to be so delicious and creamy. A friend copied this recipe from a cookbook for me, so I don’t know exactly where it came from. Oh, and of course I changed a couple things. This recipe calls for about 4lbs of chicken. I just used 3 large chicken breasts since that is all I had, but any chicken will do.
3½-4lbs Skinless Chicken Pieces (or breasts)
1 teaspoon Salt
1 Green Chili, finely chopped (or small can diced green chilies, drained)
1 Cup Plain Yogurt
2 teaspoons Ground Coriander
1 Tablespoon Fresh Ginger root, finely grated
4 Cloves Garlic, finely grated
¼ Cup Butter
Place chicken in a baking dish and prick them several times with a fork.
Combine the salt, chili, yogurt, coriander, ginger root, and garlic together in a small bowl. Pour the yogurt mixture on top of the chicken and spread over the chicken on both sides. Cover and refrigerate overnight, or for at least six hours.
When it’s time to cook the chicken:
Preheat oven to 400°. Place slices of butter onto the chicken pieces. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes. Baste the chicken with the juices (a spoon works well for this). Reduce the oven temperature to 350° and bake until the chicken is cooked thoroughly, about 20 more minutes.
Serve either alone or over rice with the yogurt sauce on top.