Instant Pot – Homemade Yogurt

Who knew yogurt could be so easy. Kalispell Creamery whole milk was on sale for $1.99 a gallon at my grocery store, I bought three gallons to try making yogurt.

The process was pretty easy, I was surprised. I love my instant Pot!!


1) disinfect your Pot first. Poor 3 cups of water into your pot and put the lid on with the seal closed. Press steam button, set to 5 minutes.

2) poor hot water out and allow pot to cool naturally or place in fridge.

3) once pot is cooled place back into instant Pot. Poor 1 gallon of whole milk into pot and press yogurt button. Adjust until you see boil.

4) whisk the milk often so the heat distributes evenly. Stirring helps the milk heat up faster also. Keep stirring every once in a while until instant Pot beeps. Check temp. Must be 180-185 degrees for a minute or so. If temp isn’t reached push the sautée button. Keep stirring until temp is reached. Once reached remove from instant Pot.

5) fill a sink full of cold water. Place pot of hot milk into cold water. Pot will float in the water. While monitoring the temp stir the milk until it cools down to 95 a 100 degrees. Once temp is reached remove pot from sink of water.

6) add 2 tablespoons of good quality yogurt with all the cultures to a small cup. Place some of the warm milk in cup with cultures and mix well. Stir into the rest of the warm milk. 

7) place pot back into the instant pot and cover with lid. Seal closed. Press yogurt button. Should read 8hrs and setting is on normal.

8) after incubation is finished remove covered pot and place into the fridge for 6-8hrs to rest.

9) after the rest period if you want the yogurt thicker strain it for several hours or over night in the fridge. You can use a yogurt strainer. I just place a strainer over a pot or large bowl, layer with cheesecloth  then poor yogurt into cheesecloth.  Gather the extra cloth around the edges and tie with a string or rubber band. Place in fridge and let the whey strain from the yogurt.

10) after straining is finished save your clear yellowish whey in sealed glass jars for up to 6 months in your fridge or freeze. You can find tons of uses for liquid whey on internet. Reuse it don’t throw away. 😉

11) add your favorite sweetener and fruit and you are ready to eat your very own homemade yogurt!!

1 gallon of whole milk makes about 2 quarts of Greek yogurt (strained) and about 2 quarts of liquid whey.


It seems like a lot of work for 2 quarts of yogurt but not really, a lot of it you are just waiting. To me knowing all the actual ingredients in my yogurt is worth it. ENJOY!!!

Solar Cooking – Zucchini Swiss Chard Fritatta

Morning Friends! This morning I am going to make another frittata for breakfast in my Solavore Solar Sport Oven. I am so enjoying harvesting the suns energy to cook my family meals. I set my solar oven outside at about 8am to preheat with the reflectors, since it is early morning time and the rays are not very hot at the moment.

TIP when cooking with liquid: Yesterday when I made my first frittata I didn’t have the solar oven level, so when I checked on my dish it was all formed up on one side leaving a very thin layer of egg matter on its opposite side. So make sure you have your solar oven on a leveled surface.

 

Zucchini Swiss Chard Frittata

• 1-2 cups thinly sliced swiss chard

• 1 small zucchini sliced into thin rounds

• 1 medium chopped bell pepper

• 1/2 – 1 cup chopped scallions

• 1/4 – 1/2 cup feta cheese crumbles

• 8 eggs

• Milk – optional

• Handful of minced herbs (I used oregano, dill & thyme)

• Coconut oil

• Salt & Pepper to taste

 

INSTRUCTIONS:

• Preheat your solar oven

• Sauté the bell peppers in a skillet, medium heat, with some coconut oil, until they start to brown.

• While the bell peppers are cooking, grease the inside of your dark 4 qrt. pot with coconut oil and layer the bottom with the sliced swiss chard.

• Cover the swiss chard with a layer of sliced zucchini rounds so you can no longer see the chard. Season with salt and pepper.

• Now add the sautéed bell peppers, scallions and minced herbs. Top off with the feta cheese crumbles.

• In a separate bowl blend your eggs together until well combined. You can add a little bit of milk if you desire. Pour over mixture.

• Season the top with salt & pepper.

• Cover with lid and place into your preheated solar oven for 1-2hrs.

ready to place in the solar oven
1hr and 45m later breakfast is ready!


 

Solar Cooking: Banana Bread

Tenaya wants to make banana bread in the solar oven, so we did. We followed the solarvore.com recipe for mango-banana bread. Didn’t have mango so we substituted 2 ripe bananas. Batter tasted great.

I SO LOVE THIS SOLAR OVEN!!!

• 1/2 cup coconut oil

• 1/2 cup sugar

• 1 egg (I used 2 med. eggs)

• 1tsp vanilla extract ( I used maple syrup)

• 2 bananas ripe

• 1 mango ripe ( I used 2 bananas)

• 2 cup flour

• 1 tbl baking powder

• 1 1/4 tsp salt

• 1/2 tsp cinnamon (I used 1 tsp)

See full recipe instructions here:

Mango Banana Bread in Solavore Oven

Solar oven was preheated to 250 deg. Placed bread pans in and locked them up. its about 4 pm.
we have a slight wind that might be blowing the heat away from the oven. its staying at 225 deg. we are 45m into banking. the dough has rising twice its original size. its working!!! i put the reflectors on o see if i can keep it around 250 deg for the rest of the baking time.
2 hours later we have 2 fresh solar baked banana bread loaves! how cool is that!

Solar Cooking: Black Bean Burger Chili

So I’m looking into my freezer and notice I bag full of broken pieces. As I examine closer I figured out I smooshed a bag of black bean burger patties. 

I know I’ll make chili in my new solar oven.

Here are the ingredients I thru together. I didn’t measure anything but I will guess.

• 4-6 broken up black bean burgers

• 2 cans of diced tomatoes w/ juice

• 1 can of black beans w/ juice

• 1 onion chopped

• 1-2 tbl Worcestershire sauce

• 1 tsp chili powder

• palm full fresh minced oregano, basil & parsley

• salt & pepper to taste
Preheat solar oven for 15-20m.

Cook & break up black bean burgers in a skillet with a little bit of oil until unthawed.

Toss everything in a 4qrt black pot with lid and combine well.

Place pot In solar oven for 3-4hrs. Mine was done in 3.5hrs.

Easy RAW Coconut Curry Soup

  
I just realized I never posted this:

I had one young Thai coconut left in the fridge, so I decided to make dinner with it. This raw vegan soup is amazing and full of rich flavor. I couldn’t believe it! So simple to make if you have a Vitamix blender. Keep blending until it becomes warm. Make sure you don’t go over 116 to 118 degrees. After 118 degrees you will start killing the nutrition and the Coconut Curry soup will no longer be considered a Raw Soup!

From Kristen Suzanne’s Easy Raw Vegan Soups book:

• 1 young Thai Coconut, meat and water
• 3 medium carrots, chopped
• 1 apple, cored and chopped
• 1 1/2 tbs red onion, chopped
• 1 tbs fresh lime juice (I used lemon)
• 1 tbs fresh orange juice
• 1 tbs curry powder
• 2 tbs coconut oil
• 2 tsp fresh minced ginger or 1/2 tsp ground
• 1 tsp Himalayan crystal salt ( I used 1/2 tsp real salt)
• 1 pinch cayenne pepper


Blend all of the ingredients until smooth and warm.

7 Layer Breakfast

 
I like to bake an egg inside a half of avocado, this was my plan for breakfast this morning – but came up with this instead. Makes 2 servings.

• 1 cup or more mashed avocado

• 2 chopped up tortillas or 4 corn to make gluten free

• salsa

• shredded cheese

• 2 – 6 eggs

• seasonings to taste: lemon juice, salt, pepper, chili powder, Italian seasoning etc.

Take individual portion oven proof cups and grease with coconut oil. Set aside.

Chop up 2 tortillas or 4 corn tortillas. Divide into 4 portions. Add one portion to each cup to form the bottom layer.

Take the mashed avocado and add some lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Divide equally into cups to form a nice 2nd layer of goodness.

Next add a small layer of salsa then the last two portions of tortillas.

Next add a layer of shredded cheese. 

For the eggs I recommend cracking individual portions (1-3 eggs depending what your cup can hold) into a separate bowl in case any shells are left behind. Once all small shell pieces are removed transfer into cup. 

Sprinkle with more cheese and season to taste.

Bake at 375 degrees until eggs are cooked about 20-30m. Keep checking after 10-15m. Try to keep the inside of the eggs runny. 

  ENJOY!