Tag Archives: milk

How I Make Yogurt

There are many ways to make yogurt. Some people use yogurt machines, some people don’t. I’ve heard that some Vietnamese people make yogurt out of sweetened condensed milk. The yogurt at my favorite Indian place tastes like they steep onions in it. You can buy a powdered yogurt starter, or you can use plain yogurt as a starter. Greek yogurt is made from high fat milk and then strained.

I prefer to make yogurt with the help of a yogurt maker. The most important thing about making yogurt is getting the temperatures right. You need the milk to be the right temperature when you combine it with the yogurt starter and you need to maintain the right temperature for the 7 hours that the yogurt cultures are growing in the milk. This second part was very difficult for me before I got a yogurt maker. Our house is not insulated, has drafty windows and doesn’t have heating or air conditioning. So the inside of our house can be anywhere from 50F in the winter to 90F in the summer. That’s why I really like having a machine that keeps the yogurt at the right temperature for as many hours as I want. Continue reading

English Muffins

Making English muffins reminded me of one reason I love baking so much – it seems magical. Isn’t it amazing how the many things can be made with flour, yeast, water, milk, salt, sugar, and butter? I have been wanting to, but putting off trying to bake English muffins for at least 6 months. For some reason I thought it would be difficult. It wasn’t really. It’s a lot like making a loaf of bread, but the main difference is that English muffins are cooked on the stove. Actually, this recipe is very similar to an Indian naan recipe I use. Continue reading

Scones in 3 Flavors


from left to right: Chocolate Chip Orange, Maple Walnut, Cheddar Garlic


I’ve been making scones since a friend gave me a scone cookbook and a scone baking pan a while ago. The book is called Simply Scones and it has a lot of great recipes in it. I would still be using it, except it’s in the US with my brother, I think. The scone pan is great because it helps shape the scones into perfect little wedges. But it’s not that hard to make the same shapes without the pan either. Scones are a pretty simple combination of flour, sugar (usually), salt, baking powder, butter, and milk. After you get the basic technique down, it’s pretty easy to create your own versions by adding different flavorings to the basic dough (nuts, cheese, spices, cocoa powder, chocolate chips, dried fruits, juices instead of milk, flavor extracts . . . ).

So today I made 3 kinds of scones. I made Chocolate Chip Orange Scones from one of my favorite recipes and then I adapted that recipe to make Maple Pecan and Cheddar Garlic scones. You may also be interested in my recipe for Apple Cheddar Scones. Continue reading

Alfredo Sauce

We make this sauce a lot and serve it over fettuccine. Sometimes I add a half cup of broccoli or seeded and diced tomato. I think this is just as good as the store bought stuff, if not better. If you have a lot of parmesan, you could use that instead of the white cheddar and it would be more authentic. Continue reading

Potato Soup

In Lao, potatoes are called “man falang” meaning “foreigner/french root”. I find that word funny because it’s surprisingly accurate. Foreigners here eat a lot more potatoes than Lao people do. Some celery or carrot would be a good addition, but I didn’t have any this time. The thyme in this soup adds a homey taste that I love. Continue reading

Arroz Con Leche (rice pudding)


This is one of James’ specialties, but since he’s away for 2 weeks, I have to make it myself! James was in charge of making breakfast for his family when he was growing up and that’s how he learned to make this dish. It’s a great way to use up leftover rice and one of my favorite breakfasts. Continue reading

Mulberry Batida


James grew up in the Dominican Republic, so that’s why we call this a batida rather than a smoothie, but it’s really the same thing. James makes a batida of some kind to drink with lunch most days. Sometimes he throws in other fruits too like papaya, mango, or just leaves it banana flavored. Continue reading