Obviously this was written a few weeks ago but for some reason I didn’t get as far as clicking publish…
So everything has changed a little since the last time I actually published a blog post and tbh I haven’t felt like sitting down and typing anything out recently but here I am talking to the ether again…
Everything and nothing has changed here. I haven’t actually had to make many changes to my life to function under lockdown conditions, as during the winter I don’t work and not being able to drive I traditionally got most of my food delivered anyway, the difference now is I am having to book my slots much further in advance. One major change that has occurred is that my mother has moved in with us, well sort of. She is currently living in the motor home at the top of my nan’s drive but eating with me etc. that has taken a little bit of getting used to as I am used to having my own space but I think we have settled into a routine and she is very much enjoying not having to cook!
Currently, it is a Saturday which is highlighting the other way that my world has changed. Normally I would spend the weekends with A but since we cannot travel atm I don’t get to see him, unfortunately/fortunately he is still working and since I am in “full lockdown” to protect my 95 year old grandmother even if we could travel we wouldn’t be able to see one another. We have survived 4 weeks so far and will survive many more, thank goodness for modern technology making this soo much easier for so many people.
One of the things I have noticed is that the amount that I communicate with some of my friends has actually increased since this started. I have started talking regularly with people I haven’t spoken to in years and have been having regular group video chats with groups of friends that have moved away or have had serious scheduling clashes with over the recent years so there is a silver lining.
As with about half the nation, I have started gardening in earnest since the restrictions started. TBH I had started to renovate the garden here at the beginning of the year as I had a feeling I would have to spend more time here in the summer than usual and so I would actually be able to do some of the veg gardening that I am not usually able to do because I am away sailing when it all needs doing. But since the lockdown, and my mother arriving, there has been a real push to get the ground prepared and sow seeds.
I feel very lucky that over the last winter I switched to eating a lot more dried beans and pulses and had stocked up my cupboard a bit and the wonderful Christmas present from Nikki, an Instant Pot, has made cooking them a breeze. Store cupboard cooking is a regular part of my normal cooking routine as getting big shops delivered means that there are often periods in between where I am lacking fresh provisions and times like this make me very glad that I have picked up this skill over the years.
I keep joking with everyone that my life is turning more and more into an episode of the Goodlife recently. Growing our own veg, last season we brewed our own cider, I have been sewing my own clothes and knitting jumpers for years and making some of my own toiletries too. Well, I have taken one more step towards that self-sufficient ‘goal’ today and have tried my hand at making yoghurt. Currently, I get my milk delivered in glass bottles and with my mother joining me I upped the order a little bit since we were both being very cautious with our milk consumption we have a bottle that needs using now (they don’t last as long as bottles with a proper lid I find) and we are running low on yoghurt so I decided to put the instant pot through its paces and make some yoghurt
Yoghurt – In InstantpotCourse: Sides, BreakfastDifficulty: Medium
Home made yoghurt in jars, using both the hob and the instant pot yoghurt setting to reduce the total time and clean up.
1 pint full fat milk
2 tsp live youghurt
- Heat 1pint of milk in a pan on the hob to 82°C
- Sterilise some jam jars in the oven – Heat to 100°C
- Cool milk to 45°C, once it reaches this temp add some to a jug and combine with 2 tsp of yoghurt to innoculate the milk. Mix with the rest of the milk.
- Pour the milk into the sterilised jam jars, place them on the trivet in the instant pot with a layer of water under the trivet.
- Use the yoghurt setting on normal with a time of 8 hours* to ferment the yoghurt. – this will count up.
- Once the timer has finished counting remove the jars and let them cool down to room temperature before putting in the fridge to finish setting.
- 8 hours is the minimum time that you would want to ferment your yoghurt for, the longer it is fermenting for the tangier it will become.
- It is possible to do the whole yoghurt process in the instant pot but this require scalding the milk in the inner pot and since I wanted to make the yoghurt in jars to reduce the transfer and clean up this didn’t seem logical. Also the pan on the hob will cool down quicker than the instant pot liner so this reduces the waiting time.
- Print Recipe
So how are we all faring? I will try and write another catch up soon, and one of these days utilise the fact that I have someone else here and get some of my makes photographed! Don’t hold your breath for that though…