Recipes for Useless Men 1 - Yoghurt

How to Make Yoghurt

We men are generally quite useless in the kitchen. Unless of course we put our mind to it for a bet, or we become professional chefs, or if we are married to a Goddess-in-Human-Shape who can’t boil an egg to save her life. In the latter case, with starvation staring us in the face as the only other alternative, we decide to learn how to cook.

As a busy lawyer and also a university lecturer in “Economics in Law”, my wife felt that the simple art of cooking did not somehow acquire a priority status in her life and resolved the problem by eating out. And then she made the mistake of marrying me.

Her attempts to cook for me have been of a tragic-comedic nature to say the least, usually ending in tears for one of us. Me. She, on the other hand laughs with pleasure at the various dishes she prepares, thinking that she has actually achieved something impressive and will eagerly sit watching me to make sure that I am enjoying her culinary skills.

After loosing 16 kilos over a relatively short period of time, and having spent all my savings in restaurants, I have decided to investigate the possibility of experimenting with other people’s recipes and I have discovered that it is not that difficult really.

I like yoghurt, so that was the first thing I learned how to do and I am now the champion yoghurt maker of the world, bar none. Knowing that there are other poor chumps like me out there, and in the spirit of Manly Brotherhood, I intend to share what I have managed to learn, starting with yoghurt, as follows:

We men are tinkerers and general handymen of one level or another, so by bringing our skills to the kitchen we can find ways and means to resolve problems in a practical, efficient and economical manner. Therefore, do not be surprised when I tell you to go to your local supermarket and obtain two scrap corrugated cartons for free, ideally 3-ply, one smaller than the other. In other words, one carton must be able to fit inside the other. If you have a cooler, then it will do just as well.

While you are at the supermarket, buy two to four litters of milk (half - one gallon for those across the pond) and one Greek style yoghurt to use as starter for making your own. This is the last time you shall have to buy yoghurt. Low fat milk is just fine, if you are on a diet.

· Start by putting one corrugated carton inside the other, after first putting any reasonable insulation between them at the bottom. Sheets of corrugated carton will do for this purpose.

· Put one old, double folded blanket inside the carton, with its ends protruding on all sides, leaving a space in the centre.

· Put some of the milk in a bowl and add two or three large spoonfuls of yoghurt and leave it aside at room temperature.

· Heat the rest of the milk, but DO NOT boil, as by boiling you will kill the necessary bacteria required to actually make yoghurt.

· When you see bubbles beginning to form on the top of your milk (about 85 degrees centigrade - 185 F), switch off the heat and pour the hot milk into one, two or more containers. (Not metal containers). I used two large glass or ceramic containers.


Dimitris Mita

De Greek

Milk & Starter

Small bowl contains the starter
Small bowl contains the starter

· When you can put your finger in the milk without being scolded, your milk will be about 45 degrees centigrade (113 F). As a rough guide, if you leave your containers uncovered, your milk should reach this temperature in about 20 minutes.

· Take the bowl of milk and yoghurt you have put aside and pour the contents in the containers with your warm milk.

· Cover the containers with plates and then put them in plastic bags.

· Now lift the plastic bags containing the milk containers, into the space formed by the blanket, in the middle of the corrugated carton. Wrap the blanket all around teh containers, creating insulation.

· Leave for 8 – 12 hours, depending on how sour you want your yoghurt. The longer you leave it the more sour the yoghurt will be.

· If it is winter, put the carton against one of your central heating radiators.

· When you take out the milk hours later, you will see that the milk is still a little warm.

· Place the containers in the fridge for two or more hours.

· Put a clean kitchen towel over a sieve and hang the sieve hooks on the edges of a large bowl.

· Poor the yoghurt from one of the containers into the towel which is over the sieve. Return the yoghurt to the refrigerator.

· The longer you leave it, the more liquid will drain off and the thicker the final yoghurt will be. Also, the longer you leave it, the easier the yoghurt will come away from the towel. If want thin yoghurt, you will have to scrape it off the towel with a spoon.

· If you are like me and you like thick yoghurt, then you will end up with half the milk you started out with in the form of yoghurt. In my case, I start out with four litters of milk and end up with two litters of yoghurt each time I make it.

· Remember to save some of the yoghurt to use as a starter the next time.

Do not be fooled by the long list above into thinking that this is at all difficult. On the contrary,, it is dead easy. If a useless man like me can do it, then anyone can. And the strange thing is that I now enjoy a sense of achievement, every time I make something in the kitchen.

In case you are raising goats in your backyard and you want a more professional approach to making goat cheese, there is a clever child who specialises in goat milk yoghurt by the name of Joy At Home and you can visit her to learn how. Also useful if you wan to learn about gutting a chicken.

The next thing I learned how to do was bread, and I hope to be able to describe this to you at another time.

---

I am sure that you will have pleasure from visiting some of my own favourite authors on HubPages, who are:

Zsuzsy Bee, Gypsy Willow, _cheryl_ , Joy At Home, lisadpreston, Feline Prophet, Lee B, glassvisage, jcwin228, sunflowerbucky, tonymac04, IzzyM, Merlin Fraser, Internetwriter62, gaming-guru, Ladybird33, Nicole Winter and i scribble.

You may also enjoy reading:

ADVICE TO YOUTH - 1 : What advice would you give to an inexperienced young man?

“Go West Young Man” has already been done, so if one is to give Advice to Youth one must try to think up ways and means to keep Youth from falling asleep during the advice giving process.

More by this Author


Comments 54 comments

Feline Prophet profile image

Feline Prophet 6 years ago from India

Most Indians can't do without their yoghurt - or curds as we call it here - but I'm sure there aren't many Indian men who've mastered the art of making it! For that matter not many Indian women make it at home these days - thank heavens for supermarket shelves! :P


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

The male is a domestic animal which, if treated with firmness, can be trained to do most things. - Jilly Cooper

Thank you for visiting :-)))


Feline Prophet profile image

Feline Prophet 6 years ago from India

Haha, spoken like a man who has resigned himself to the inevitable! :D


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Could it be otherwise? You are a classic example of woman's superiority over man :-)


Merlin Fraser profile image

Merlin Fraser 6 years ago from Cotswold Hills

Hi There; Not sure if this makes me smarter or just more devious than you but I did my courting around the local teacher training college and found one with home ecconomic skills. (Cooking being amoungst those skills.)

Although I have to confess I also enjoy dabbling in the dark arts of the kitchen and love to experiment.

So if you want to swap recipes give me a shout !


Merlin Fraser profile image

Merlin Fraser 6 years ago from Cotswold Hills

The male is a domestic animal which, if treated with firmness, can be trained to do most things. - Jilly Cooper

Unlike the female of the spieces; I tried for years to get my wife to put the toilet seat back up after she had finished....


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

"I tried for years to get my wife to put the toilet seat back up after she had finished...." I just can't stop laughing at this Merlin.. :-))

And yes, I shall be happy to swap cooking stories with you, or more corectly, bow to your greater knowledge .. :-)


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

I warn you though Merl, when I managed to make custard and jelly the first time, I thought that I had conquered the world! :-)


Merlin Fraser profile image

Merlin Fraser 6 years ago from Cotswold Hills

I tried to impress once with custard and jelly by making a strawberry trifle with double whipped cream on top.

Managed to make a complete Horlicks of it by using the liquid in a can of strawberries as part of the liquid to make the jelly. Never did set.... tasted OK


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Merl, we have to stop meeting like this :-)))


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Would it be ethical for me to take advantage of our centuries old friendship and ask you for a favour Merl?

I have two pieces here which I rather like: Andvice to Youth 1 and Allergies or A EULOGY BY TEH DECEASED. Could I possibly impose on you as a published author to have a look at them and tell me what you think? PLEASE? :-)


IzzyM profile image

IzzyM 6 years ago from UK

I've read your hub and am still none the wiser on how to make yoghurt, but your style of writing is hilarious! Can't wait to read more of your works!


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Izzy thank you for passing by. Please listen carefully:

IT-IS-A-STEP-BY-STEP-PROCESS. If you follow the steps, you shall emerge triumpthant from the yoghurt making jungle.

And I don't love you any more, as you did not become a fan!... :-))


IzzyM profile image

IzzyM 6 years ago from UK

Heyyyy, gimme time! I'm still reading through your stuff and doing a million other things at the same time (we women are excellent at multi-tasking!) Don't worry, def going to fan you!


Merlin Fraser profile image

Merlin Fraser 6 years ago from Cotswold Hills

I have read A Eulogy by the Deceased and have placed my comments there, for what they're worth, although you may be putting too much faith in my opinion.


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Thank you Izzy

AND

Thank you Merlin. I don't think that I am wrong about you. With your sense of humour? Nahhh... :-)


Joy At Home profile image

Joy At Home 6 years ago from United States

I couldn't stop laughing! This definitely sounds like a man's way of doing things. But hey, it works, right? Anyway, I intend to link to your article on my yogurt-making one, so if this isn't OK, let me know.


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Joy, I don't know what linking to my article means, but if it is not painful to me, you are very welcome to do it. Just be gentle. :-)


Joy At Home profile image

Joy At Home 6 years ago from United States

I just mean I intend to let readers of my article know that yours is also available, and they can click a link on mine to get to it. It helps both of us. :-)


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Excellent! If you will tell me how to do it, I shall do the same :-))


lisadpreston profile image

lisadpreston 6 years ago from Columbus, Ohio

Hello friend,

I just got out of the hospital acouple of hours ago. Been there for a week so I have a lot of catching up to do.

This was a nice article. I used to date an Iranian who always made homemade yogurt. It was yummy over cucumbers and tomato. Why is it that men always make the better cooks? Ok, not always. I think they have more patience. I will have to bookmark this and re read a few times to grasp how to make yogurt. My thinking isn't very clear right now. Thanks.


Joy At Home profile image

Joy At Home 6 years ago from United States

De Greek,

When you go into "Edit" mode on one of your hubs, one of the options you'll see on your "Add New Capsules" widgets bar is "Links". Click that, then position the capsule where you want it, and push edit on it.

It will give you options for either copying and pasting a URL into the search bar, or searching HP for articles of your topic choice, by entering key words in the bar.

The simplest way to do a link is to use the URL of the article you wish to link to, by copying it from the browser bar ("address bar", some people call it). You can paste this into the bar in your "Links" capsule. (Alternatively, use the URL option in the "Link to This Page" button at the bottom of each hub. This ensures that you include a HP tracking number in the link.)

If you wish to embed the link in the text of your article, rather than using the "Links" box, you can do so by pushing "Edit" on whichever text capsule you want the link in. Next, highlight the words to which you want to link the article's URL, and click the picture of a chain link on your capsule toolbar. Just paste the desired URL into the space provided, and HP will embed the link for you, turning the words you highlighted blue.

If you're interested, I found an article which tells how to make links that open the linked article in a new page, so the reader doesn't get disoriented. Here it is:

http://hubpages.com/hub/create_links_that_open_a_n...

I hope this helps!


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Joy, I want to return the favour as soon as possible, so pleeeeeeeeease bear with me. I am a complete ignoramus and I need detailed instruction on how to do this. Please do not write in an abstract way. Send me an email which says

1 . - Do this

2 . - Do that and write that specifically...

Look forward to receiving your email. I shall print it and follow it to the letter.


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Lisa child, good see you again. Sorry to hear that you were in hospital. I thought that perhaps one of my clumsy attempts at humour had somehow offended you. Get well soon and tell me all your news when you feel better.. :-)


Joy At Home profile image

Joy At Home 6 years ago from United States

I'll do my best. :-)


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Good Girl! :-)


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Joy, I HAVE DONE IT!!! Check out the link at the bottom of teh texst :-)


Joy At Home profile image

Joy At Home 6 years ago from United States

Hurray! It looks great! So sorry I couldn't get back to you in a timely manner. 10 minutes after leaving my last comment (5 days ago), our internet signal went down, and didn't come back for four days. We thought it was the blizzard we were experiencing, shaking the signal tower. High winds often mess up the signal. 24 hours later we found out our internet supplier had made a billing mistake...thought we didn't pay, when we really did, and had cut off our internet.

But, life goes on.


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Joy! So good to see you again child :-))

I thought that you had given up on me. I am so enamoured of your literary and chicken gutting skilss, that I have put links to your site on all my hubs. I don't know if you noticed. Glad to see that everything is now up and running again. :-)


stars439 profile image

stars439 6 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

great idea.


Cris A profile image

Cris A 6 years ago from Manila, Philippines

Whaddayamean useless?! I mean I could just imagine the look of interest, if not intrigue, on people if I say "I can't cook but I know how to make yoghurt!" as it is a claim not many people have a claim to. Haha Thanks or sharing :D


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Stars, thank you for passing by. We men can teach the female of the species a thing or two when we set our minds to it, what? :-)

AND

Chris, the stroke of genius, which no woman would have thought of, was using the two cartons to create a cooler, at not cost! :-))

I made yoghurt last night and I took photos. if I can work out this contraption, I shall put them online.

Thank you both very much for visiting.


charanjeet kaur profile image

charanjeet kaur 6 years ago from Delhi

De Greek, your hub has the perfect comic timing. I always wanted to make curds at home in my stay in Sweden or London like the way we do in India. It never turned out fine as it curdled and never formed the right texture due to lack of heat. I am so bookmarking this hub.


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

The two corrugated cartons and the blanket create the necessary insulation for heat. If you place the lot next to a central heating radiator, you have it made. I make yoghurt every week now, so I know. Enjoy :-)


Zsuzsy Bee profile image

Zsuzsy Bee 6 years ago from Ontario/Canada

Sir Greek you are now ready to make your own cream Cheese... http://hubpages.com/food/Easy-to-make-Cream-Cheese you will love it and impress your wife. If you have any questions just email me.

You have the gift of gab, better said a gift to get the point of your stories across in a funny way which makes your hubs a lot of fun to read.

another fabulous hub

regards Zsuzsy


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

How kind you are Zsuzsy. But I think I had better give you the rest of the day off, as you have been reading my hubs for hours now..:-)

I am now learning to cook (yes, I know) so I shall check out your recipe. Thank you again...:-)


RosWebbART profile image

RosWebbART 6 years ago from Ireland

I like your style De Greek; great hub; great humour!- I do know lots of men who are great in the kitchen but they never get the idea about cleaning up afterwards!of course I realise you are not one of these men....


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Of course the De Greeks are a tidy lot, Ros. We get our wives to push us aside and clean up after us, by messing up the process ourselves on a regular basis...:-))


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia

I'm impressed - my hubby can't boil water!


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Yes, but your hubby has YOU. In my case, if I dont cook, I starve:-)

Good to see you again habee :-)


saddlerider1 profile image

saddlerider1 6 years ago

Hey De Greek I think everyone should try making YogHurt or is it Yogurt..ha. doesn't matter it would hurt me to think about trying to make it. I like Yoghurt but not enough to make it myself. I love to cook oriental dishes as you can read in one of my hubs about ingredients and techniques. You are a brave man Mr DG for making yoghurt and I commend you.When you have a passion, one has to attempt it and get fulfillment in knowing it was conquered and knows it can be repeated time and time again. Great post, love the humor that goes with it. Enjoy your passion Yoghurt:0)


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Brother Saddlerider, you wrong me. I do not enjoy any manual labour, but in this case I had to learn out of necessity. As it turns out it's very easy :-))


SilverGenes 6 years ago

This is not something I have ever tried. It was always sort of mysterious to me how fermented things came to be so I relied on the supermarket for them. Perhaps it's time to get brave and give it a shot! :-)


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

It's not for everyone, but I enjoy making it :-)


tonymac04 profile image

tonymac04 6 years ago from South Africa

I used to make yoghurt with the goats' milk that we got from the goats on our small holding some years back. We used a yoghurt plant that looked a bit like cauliflower. Delicious it was. Love yoghurt. In South Africa we make also a soured milk called amasi which is very good to drink. Traditionally made in a hollowed out calabash.

Thanks for sharing your method.

Love and peace

Tony


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

You are pulling my leg right? :-)))


Juliette Morgan profile image

Juliette Morgan 6 years ago

I was getting quite suspicious when I read about the blanket! But what a great method - all you need to do now is make the honey to go with it (joking)! I should be doing this though, as my husband eats 1 a day of the expensive variety that has choco balls or fruit puree in the corner, next to the yoghurt. Thanks for sharing.


mulberry1 profile image

mulberry1 6 years ago

I wasn't a cook either when I got married. Unfortunately my husband was willing to put up with far more pain than you were...so eventually I learned.


2patricias profile image

2patricias 6 years ago from Sussex by the Sea

This does sound more like a project than a recipe - but homemade yoghurt is good, and both of us eat buckets of the stuff.

Hope you don't mind, but we'll add a link from our hub "Grocery Shopping List to use as a Checklist". We'll put it next to the dairy section.


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

@ - Juliette, I don't know how I missed your comment, but I did. Please forgive an unintentionally rude person :-))

@ - Mulberry, it certainly is good to have the right spouse. Thank you for passing by :-)

@ - Hi there 2patricias, you still haven't dropped in for lunch :-))


katiem2 profile image

katiem2 6 years ago from I'm outta here

This is fantastic, one of my favorite treats is Greek Yogurt with blueberries. I must make my own Yogurt as this is just fantastic indeed. Thank you for the wonderful tip.

Foot note; I have three brothers who are all amazing chefs, as a result of their wives lacking. I on the other hand have had to learn since I've had kids...

Great starter and many thanks :)


De Greek profile image

De Greek 6 years ago from UK Author

Hi there Katie, I am surprised you found this hub, as it is the least succesful of my lot :-) - Thank you for passing by :-)


Gypsy Willow profile image

Gypsy Willow 5 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

I was attempting to make yogurt today and I suddenly remembered your hub. Thanks for the tips. I hope it will be a success.


De Greek profile image

De Greek 5 years ago from UK Author

.

The De Greeks were born to help their friends, child :-)))

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