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Homemade Yogurt

Today is the third time I have made yogurt. My first attempt a couple of weeks ago was delicious, but runny. My second attempt, last week was a disaster. I added gelatin as some of the recipes suggested only to end up with gross gelatin lumps that ruined the texture and it was still runny!

I am hopeful that today’s batch will turn out. I used whole milk instead of 2% and added tapioca powder and powdered milk, all the things that I read would make thicker yogurt. I won’t know for another five hours, that’s how long it has to incubate.

What I did today…

Here are the ingredients:

1/2 gallon of whole milk

1/2 cup sugar

1 container plain yogurt

2 tablespoons powered milk

2 tablespoons tapioca powder

1/2 of a vanilla bean

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Here are the steps

1. Prep all the ingredients.

I powdered the tapioca in the blender. The tapioca then goes into the pan with the milk to get heated.

I cut open the vanilla bean and scraped out the insides, then mixed it into the 1/2 cup of sugar. I also added the 2 tablespoons of powered milk to the sugar.

Set the container of store bought plain yoghurt out to warm up a bit.

2. Heat the milk and tapioca in a heavy pan. I used my enameled cast iron Dutch oven.

I stirred constantly to bring the milk to 180 – 183 degrees. I also threw in the empty vanilla bean that I had already scraped the insides out of.

3. When the milk reached 180 – 183 degrees I stirred in the sugar mixture and vanilla extract. This is when I removed the vanilla bean pod. I removed the pan from the heat and set it in the sink that I had filled with cool water.

4. I continued stirring until the temperature dropped to 110 degrees then I stirred a cup of the warm milk mixture into the store bought yogurt and dumped it back into the pan stirring the mixture well.

5. I put the lid on the pan and stuck in in my oven with the pilot light lit. I also read that wrapping a towel around the pot and turning your oven light on will keep it warm enough as well, if you don’t have an oven with a pilot light.

Now to wait six hours for the yogurt to incubate. If everything goes right I should end up with some yummy yogurt ❤️

…and the results are in!

It turned out nice and thick, yay!

I’m calling this batch a win, it is thick and tastes great. Adding the powdered milk changed the texture a little, it’s not quite as smooth, but it is far better than having it runny.

Look how cute and yummy all my little pots of vanilla bean yogurt are…

One final picture, breakfast ❤️

Stone Creek Farm “Vintage”

I’m back in New Mexico, but my heart is still at the farm.

Today I spent time creating a “vintage postcard” graphic for Stone Creek. I have always loved the way these look, so I decided to try and make one. All in all I’m pretty happy with it. I think I’ll put it on some t-shirts to start with.

Bunnies

While I was home we ended up getting baby bunnies ❤️

Kelsey and Sam get the responsibility of taking care of them… I get to hold them and love them when I’m home, then leave the work to Kelsey. It’s a pretty sweet deal for me!

They are Lion Head bunnies. They will have super long, fluffy manes. Super cute. We are going to try raising them to see if we can make them pay for themselves. If nothing else they are a great addition to our petting zoo.

New creations

I posted this sugar and creamer on Social Media, so some of you will have seen it already. I’m working on making more of them to sell.

Also, I tried my hand at making a vase.

It’s different from my usual style, but one like it caught my eye online, so I had to try and make one ☺️

Did I ever post pictures of my tulip crates I made last month? I can’t remember if I did… so here you go…

Next week…

I think my next blog post will be about making yogurt. I’ve made it twice this week and I LOVE IT!

Until then…

Willys update

She’s up and running!

I picked Ron up at the airport at about 11am and by 2 pm he had the Willys running. Did I mention that included the hour drive home from the airport?

I think we are going to have a lot of fun with this wagon. However, I think Ron may have forgotten that he bought it for me😉 The four wheel drive even appears to be working !

The grand babies love it too! Papa took them for a quick ride around the property.

Inspiration photo

for restoration

Okay, I realize we have a long ways to go to get my wagon to look like this wagon, but the fun is in the journey, right?

Big news at Stone Creek Farm!

We broke ground!

Today a great group of guys started grading for our house.

It’s pretty exciting to see this kind of progress. We might just get to realize our dreams here on the farm.

Here is a drawing of our house/barn that we plan on building.

They definitely found a few rocks while digging out the house pad.

It seems crazy that in order to make a house pad all the dirt has to be dug out and then put back and packed down. We have mountains of dirt waiting to go back into the pad.

In other news…

My birthday and Ron’s and my 38th anniversary are coming up on Valentine’s Day ❤️

Ron got me an early present for our anniversary/my birthday.

I am now the proud owner of a 1958 Willys Wagon! I’m hoping that at some point in the future I’ll be able to drive it to the farmer’s market filled with flowers and herbs grown here on the farm.

Now, just for pure cuteness 😊

We stopped at the feed store today to get alfalfa pellets for the goats and nearly came home with bunnies. We aren’t quite ready for bunnies yet, but it was sooo tempting ❤️

Until next time….

Yes, I’m still alive…

Wow!

It’s been awhile since I’ve been here on my blog. Ron and I went home to “The Farm” for Thanksgiving and I got to stay until New Years day🎉

I am a creature who loves routine, as soon as I’m out of my routine I become a scattered mess.🤦‍♀️ Even when it’s something good, like going home for a prolonged visit.

So, that’s the excuse I am going to use for neglecting my blog.

While I was home…

I got to spend time with family while I was home. We hosted a “Cousin Christmas Camp” at the farm. My sister, Trina, is the Greatest! She organized three days of Christmas activities for the grand babies. Only Hunter and Madeline were unable to attend. The age range was one month to eight years old.

The kids had a blast even with one of them having to go get stitches in his hand and the nasty sickness that was going around hitting a few of the attendees.

There were eighteen of us there and five RV’s. A good time was had by most😏

Pottery time…

Since my pottery wheel is here in New Mexico with me, I joined a pottery studio in Ojai while I was home to continue practicing my skills.

I enjoyed meeting other potters and managed to make about twenty pieces.

The pieces in the oddly framed bottom photo didn’t get their final firing done before I had to leave, but my daughter, Kelsey, will pick them up for me when they are done.

Avocado trees…

We planted twenty avocado trees while Ron was home for Christmas. We are pretty excited about them. Not only are they delicious and a good source of income, they will provide some privacy that we lost with the Thomas Fire.

Stone Creek Farm is shaping up!

…and back to New Mexico

I dropped Ron off at the airport on New Year’s Day so he could be back at work on the second of January.

Then I headed to San Diego for a quick visit with our son’s family.

It’s always good to get snuggles in with these sweet babies.

Then it was back on the road to New Mexico. Now I’m trying to settle back into the routine that I have here on the job.

My life is kind of crazy… just about the time I settle into a routine in one place, I move to another place. I think God is trying to teach me to be a bit more flexible and not such a scattered mess😉

Until next time…