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Middleburg, FL, United States
Thursday, April 1, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Other uses for a dehydrator and how bread plays a role in it… 6 HBin5 – Carrot bread -

I purchased my Excalibur dehydrator a while back and it has been in use quite a bit. I like to create my own vegetable powders and seasonings instead of purchasing vegetable cubes/granulates etc. A major advantage here is that I know what’s in it and the herbs and veggies my garden produces find an awesome use. What I don’t produce myself I am able to purchase “in season” which saves money.
I use these powders/granulates on a daily basis and it puts me right back to a time when the sun was shinning, the bees where humming (they sure love my herb garden) which is a picture I cherish when the outside is cold and dark.
This time however my dehydrator was used not in drying vegetable and such but to make some yogurt which was an ingredient in the second bread dough for this month (please read my last post for more detail)  HBin5 challenge and the first time I used the dehydrator in this manner.
I wanted to make my own yogurt for a while. I have done so years ago but that memory has fated and it did include a second hand yogurt maker which I no longer own.
I have been thinking about several methods I could go about it this time around. Recently the food blogging world has been buzzing with making yogurt in the Crockpot. I was a bit unsure about this method since one method was having to fill the finished yogurt into jars afterwards and there was talk about it not setting right if filled into jars prior. I have one big jar (over 500ml) that I wanted to make the yogurt in not fill it in later.
I researched it a little and finally thought about my dehydrator and the book that came with it sure enough on page 92 it gave directions to make yogurt.
A few hours later I had yogurt ready to go into the fridge. I made the dough the next day.
Here is how you make yogurt in your Excalibur dehydrator (I purchased mine refurbished).
If you don’t have a dehydrator you can use the same method except instead of putting it into the dehydrator place your warm jars into something insulated (maybe your cooler) with wool blankets and a couple of warm bottles.

Update: check here to see how to make it in your cooler

Yogurt –Ingredients-
4c milk (I use whole milk)
1/2c powdered milk (this helps to make the yogurt creamier)
2T plain yogurt (make sure it’s just natural yogurt, no additives. This is where the yogurt cultures come from)
Mix the milk and powdered milk and bring to a boil for a few seconds. Cool this mixture to 120F.
Take 1/4c of this mixture and mix it with 2T of the plain yogurt (I like Greek yogurt for it’s thick, mild and creamy texture) and mix it up. Add this mixture back to the milk mixture and fill the yogurt mixture into your prepared jars or containers. 
Cover your containers and place on the bottom of the dehydrator. Set the temperature to 115F and heat for 3 hours. Mine was done at this time. If yours is not check every 15 min. after the initial 3 hours. Let it cool down and place in the fridge to cool further.
This yogurt is awesome. Just the way I like it. Thick, creamy and mild. I already made my second batch since this one was gone quickly.

Now to the second bread of this month HBin5 challenge using this yogurt.

April 1st Olive Spelt Bread

1/2 recipe
Hbin5 page 96-97
-No olives- / 630 spelt flour (not the whole kernel) / added 1/2c wheat bran

This dough was very wet. I needed a bit flour to shape into a loaf. It also spread quite (my rise time was 45 min.) a bit. Next time I would place the loaf into a bread form for the rise.
Spelt flour was nothing new for me, I always use spelt flour. It’s such a great flour and I am glad it’s getting more exposure. This bread has sourdough characteristics. The taste screams sourdough big time.
I like this bread very much though it turned out flatter than I like.
I have a new oven that keeps all the moisture inside creating a nice thick crust if one chooses too. However I am still working on the right coloring.
This one tastes just like if it was baked in a wood burning stove. Great crust with just a little charred area (not really charred but very dark) around the cuts.
Great bread, I would bake this one again.


Raelyn said...

Thanks for the tutorial on making yogurt. I may need to try that. And great job on the bread.

Michelle said...

I am so jealous! I really wanted an Excalibur Dehydrator! Great idea to make yogurt in the Dehyrator and I've heard you can use a heating pad too!

Don't you love the Flour Wand, it's one of my most used kitchen gadgets!

Bonnie said...

Thank you for the lesson on Yogurt. I've always wanted to try making it but I don't need one more kitchen appliance. But guess what? I have an older excaliber dehydrator (It looks just like yours). I'm going to try making my own. Your crust and crumb on your bread is so beautiful. I don't think it matters that the loaf is a bit spread. This was a very soft dough.

Mama Peck said...

I used to make yogurt all the time.. my brother gave me a yogurt maker for Christmas one year. But, sadly, it just died one day and I haven't thought about it for years. But, your post has reminded me how good it was. Thanks for the tutorial! Your bread looks delicious.

Cathy (breadexperience) said...

I've been wanting to make yogurt. Thanks for the tutorial. I'll have to try that. My BF has a dehydrator.

I loved this bread! I think yours looks just fine. It has a beautiful crust!

Chow and Chatter said...

wow awesome bread with homemade yogurt your a star

Cristie said...

I made yogurt years ago, too many to remember exactly how to do it. Thanks for the update. Your loaf looks like it produced a beautiful crumb.

Elwood said...

I've wanted to make yogurt also, and using a dehydrator is a great idea. Your loaves looked great.

Femalechef said...

WOW What a great post thanks...........

Jenny said...

Interesting post about using a dehydrator for making yogurt. I make yogurt pretty regularly for our family and bought a yogurt maker at the start of the year and love it!

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