Long time, no blog.
Although exams and papers have kept me from logging my local food adventures, my schoolwork hasn't halted my creativity in the kitchen! In fact, I performed a few daring experiments that went surprisingly well.
The other night, I was avoiding my English paper at all costs and went on good old Amazon.com. Oops... well, I had been thinking earlier that day about my staple food products and how a lot of them besides produce are not local to SC. That is, my yogurt is shipped from far, far away. I recalled a little "how-to" from a book I'd read the summer before called No Impact Man by Colin Beavan about homemade yogurt, and decided I wanted to give it a shot. Two purchases were made: the first was two packets of yogurt cultures and the second was a strainer for yogurt to make Greek-style yogurt and yogurt cheese! Here's why they were FANTASTIC investments...
First of all, I had so much stinkin fun making this stuff that I was giddy and dancing around stirring my yogurt cultures. I decided to use the crockpot-overnight method for making my yogurt. All it required was my mini crockpot, milk (I chose organic skim), my yogurt cultures, and some big bath towels. I heated the milk to about 180 (total guess, I just let it heat on low for 3 hours), let it cool to 111 (again, just guessed and waited till I could stick my finger in it comfortably), stirred in my cultures, and let the crockpot sit in thick bath towels overnight (homemade incubator!). When I awoke, I had YOOOGUURRRT! I poured half of it into a big Mason jar and the other half into my strainer contraption. Four hours later, I had thick Greek yogurt.
The contraption worked amazingly, and my yogurt tasted great too! I stirred in some pumpkin, nutmeg, cinnamon, and maple agave - tasted like creamy pumpkin pie filling :)
I ended up straining the Mason jar full of plain yogurt too and making a key lime pie. WHAT? KEY LIME PIE? Yes, and it was sugar-free, fat-free, and high protein. I guess I'll share the secret: Sugar-free lime jello mix... and some truvia. That's it. Everyone raved about it being the best, creamiest key lime pie they'd ever had, and their jaws dropped in disbelief when I gave them the nutritional lowdown.
Need to find a local farmer to get some milk. Found meat, now need milk.
My boredom also got the best of me today and I made some blondies instead of brownies, this time using chickpeas. I also got funky with it and added peanutbutter, making heavenly little peanut butter blondie cakes that disappeared instantly (okay, I ate a little more than half of the batch, shoot me).
Before game day, I did a little more creative baking and made some tailgate treats: corn dog muffins. SUUUPER simple. Corn muffin mix and hot dogs and happy tailgaters.
Oh yeah, and I broke my kneecap at half time when I stepped up onto a bleacher. Sorry there isn't a good story; I was sober and well-behaved, and my clumsiness just got the best of me.
Homemade granola and banana chocolate muffins were the result of my bed rest imprisonment.