Saturday, March 10, 2012

Greek Yogurt

I've been a bit addicted to greek yogurt lately and decided to figure out how to make it myself since it's so expensive. We've had really good results with this easy recipe so I thought I would share.

This recipe makes a big batch, you are more than welcome to cut it in half, I just do it this way so I'm not constantly making yogurt.

1 gallon milk (I use 2%)
1/2 cup yogurt - whatever brand/flavor you want. I've used Chobani Plain in the past and liked the results but is up to you.

1. Heat entire gallon of milk in large pot to almost boiling (but not boiling)--about 180 degrees.

2. Let milk cool to about 110 degrees - until warm to the touch. You can either let it sit in the hot pot for a long while to cool down or pour into a large bowl to cool. I like to stir mine occasionally to avoid getting the skin on top.

3. Heat oven to 170 degrees.

4. When milk has cooled down, take out about 1/2 cup of milk into another bowl. Whisk in your 1/2 cup of yogurt starter and then whisk the whole mixture into the large bowl of milk.

5. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap.

6. Turn off heated oven and place yogurt mixture in warm oven. Leave overnight or at least 8 hours.

7. In the morning remove yogurt mixture from oven. Place a large strainer lined with coffee filters over a bowl. Spoon yogurt mixture into the strainer and let sit on the counter for 1-2 hours.

8. When strained. Carefully dump yogurt into another large bowl. Remove coffee filters and discard whey. Whisk yogurt until smooth and creamy. Place in jars and refrigerate.

9. My kids like to make their own flavored yogurt by mixing in a spoonful of their favorite jam.

10. Save 1/2 cup for your next yogurt starter.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Snicker Cookies

In mixer beat until fluffy:

1 cup butter
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup brown sugar

2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda

Wrap about a tablespoon of dough around snickers candy bar (either 1 whole mini-sized per cookie or 1/3 of a fun-sized)

Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes

Drizzle frosting over warm cookies
1 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
2 Tbsp melted butter
canned milk

Mississippi Mud Brownies

These are one of my hubby's favorites at our house and seem to become a party staple in the summertime.

Fudge Brownie Recipe
absolutely amazing by themselves, with frosting or as Mississippi mud

In Bosch or Mixer
1 pound (4 cubes) butter (not softened)

Slowly add:
4 cups sugar

7 large eggs
4 tsp vanilla
7/8 cups cocoa
4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1-2 cups nuts, chopped (optional)

Mix and pour into a well-greased jelly-roll pan.

Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

For Mississippi Mud add
10 oz miniature marshmallows for the last three minutes of cooking time. Cool and frost with homemade chocolate frosting.
The recipe says you should let rest for 24 hours--good luck.

Chocolate Frosting
4 Tbsp melted butter
4 heaping Tbsp cocoa powder (sifted)
4 cups powdered sugar (sifted)
dash of salt
enough cream, canned milk, or milk to make spreading consistency.
Beat with electric mixer and spread

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

St. Patrick's Day Rainbow

This is Hadley's idea for St. Patrick's Day. . .so cute.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Curried Lentils and Rice Casserole

I made this dish last night for dinner and it was the perfect wholesome-goodforyou-comfort-food. It has a creamy texture almost like potatoes and although Gaby thought it was a little sweet, I couldn't get enough of it. It makes a huge pan so I was happy there were plenty of leftovers for the rest of the week. Anything Ali makes over at is fantastic, I changed up a few little things according to what I had on hand but this has definitely made it to our regular cycle. It has a long cooking time so you have to plan ahead in that way but it's a synch to put together.

a few Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger, or 1/2 tsp of powdered
1 tsp dried turmeric
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons sea salt
4 carrots, chopped or 1 yam peeled and cut into cubes
1 1/2 cups french lentils, or any lentil
1 cup brown rice
5 cups water
1 can coconut milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Saute onion in olive oil until soft, about 5 to 6 minutes. Add ginger, turmeric, spices, and salt. Continue to saute for another 2 minutes until fragrant.

Place onion-spice mixture into a large casserole dish. Add carrots, lentils, rice, water, and coconut milk. Mix together well. Cover and bake for 2 hours.

After 2 hours, turn oven temp up to 425 degrees F. Remove cover and cook for another 20 to 30 minutes to let excess liquid cook off. Stir and serve!

Rosemary White Bean Soup

I got this recipe from one of Ina Garten's books and I LOVE the flavor. For supper club my beans were quite done so it actually may needed longer cooking time than is in the recipe. I've also read that the sugar in the onions makes it hard for beans to go soft so maybe you could try cooking the beans first and then adding the onions.


  • 1 pound dried white beans
  • 4 cups sliced yellow onions (3 onions)
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large branch fresh rosemary (6 to 7 inches)
  • 2 quarts chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


In a medium bowl, cover the beans with water by at least 1-inch (and 2 Tbsp of kefir or lemon juice to further break down the beans) and leave overnight. Drain.

In a large stockpot over low to medium heat, saute the onions with the olive oil until the onions are translucent, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the garlic and cook over low heat for 3 more minutes. Add the drained white beans, rosemary, chicken stock, and bay leaf. Cover, bring to a boil, and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes, until the beans are very soft. Remove the rosemary branch and the bay leaf. Pass the soup through the coarsest blade of a food mill, or place in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse until coarsely pureed. Return the soup to the pot to reheat and add salt and pepper, to taste. Serve hot.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Cauliflower Leek Soup

This is a super simple soup that I got from a friend just the other day and I made for supper club tonight. It has a lovely, mild flavor and seemed to hit the spot for me when I heard about it the other day. For me, the recipe lived up to expectations. Leeks are a yummy and often under-utilized veggie so this was fun to be able to use several of them. I've also never been a big fan of raw cauliflower but cauliflower in a pureed soup? Yummy! So, here is the recipe. 


2 bunches of leeks
1 head of cauliflower
2 T. butter
3 c. chicken broth
1 c. or 8 oz. Greek plain yogurt
Salt and pepper to taste

Chop up the white and light green parts of the leeks (I chopped just a bit of the dark green too). Turn soup pan on medium-high heat and add the butter. Sautee the chopped leeks in the butter for several minutes until they soften. Chop the garlic and add to the leeks and immediately add the chicken broth. Bring to boil and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes to soften the cauliflower. 

Take the soup off the heat and let cool for a few minutes. At this point you can use an immersion blender or a regular blender to puree the soup. I used my immersion blender to puree the soup. If you do it in a regular blender, just do the soup in batches. (You may have to let the soup cool a bit longer before adding to the blender.)  Once the soup is fully pureed, add the Greek yogurt (or you could try just plain yogurt). If the soup is too cool at this point reheat for a few minutes and then salt and pepper to taste. Serve.