Rambling on my mind

rye bread

photoThis episode of Eat This Podcast is something of a departure. With nothing in the pantry, so to speak, I had to make something with what I had: myself. So I hooked myself up to the audio recorder and went about some of my customary weekend cooking, muttering out loud about what I was doing and offering some reflections on my attitude to food and cooking. I hope the result sheds some light on where I’m coming from. Normal service will be resumed next episode.

I started this exercise determined not to apologise either for having indulged myself so or for the audio quality. And I almost made it. But not quite. So, please accept my apologies, mostly for the quality of the audio at time. This stuff is not easy single handed.

Also, no instructions from me on how to make your own yoghurt. If you want to learn the secrets of yoghurt as made by Turkish grannies, try The Food Programme.


  1. The first recipe for my version of a light rye bread is here, though it doesn’t look very pretty. Pictures here. I need to transfer that recipe to the baking site, or better yet update it, because the current version is much better.
  2. A couple of earlier podcasts dealt with integrity vs “authenticity” and good industrialisation.


    1. Jeremy Cherfas

      Sorry Dan, been busy. Yes, the glaze was cornflour (amido de mais, quite thin, about single cream consistency) in water, and it gave exactly the reverse effect I was looking for. I want a shiny glaze …

  1. That’s a timely reminder. Been telling myself to start making yogurt at home for weeks. It’s expensive, but it also irritates me that our local council only recycles plastic bottles (2, HDPE) but not other plastics, notably yogurt cartons (5, Polypropylene). So I’m ending up with a stupid collection of pots, pending their fate in the landfill or being transported to a less backwards area.

    I’ve made yogurt before but it was c1994, in New Zealand, with milk from our own cows. I can’t remember how we processed it though. I assume we pasteurised it. What happens if you try to make yogurt with raw milk – is there a battle between the native bacteria and the desired lactobacillus etc?

    You mention your starter culture – this could just be a blob of some good quality live active yogurt right?

    Ye Olde Fahrenheit….

    1. Jeremy Cherfas

      No problem with raw milk, but the starter does need to be from a reasonably stable yoghurt, rather than a mass-produced brand which probably uses pure strains to inoculate. See if someone who is already doing it reliably will give you some.

      Heat to 195, cool to 125, add a dollop of starter and keep warm for 12-24 hours.

      Dead simple.

      1. Just have to remember you’re talking in Fahrenheit. So in new money, heat to 90, cool to 52. In terms of the keeping it warm stage, do you think it’d work to put it in our airing cupboard? It seems to be about mid-20s C in there.

        I get raw milk from these guys http://www.hookandson.co.uk/
        They also do yogurt – it’s extraordinarily expensive, so perhaps it’d be a good investment for a stable starter. Hopefully. Better than just your supermarket Yeo Valley.

        Will get some Friday and experiment at the weekend.

        1. Jeremy Cherfas

          I just heard Hook senior on The Food Programme; very entertaining. And definiteloy worth the investment to get a good culture.

          Airing cupboard would be perfect. Mine is literally in one of those old mozzarella boxes wrapped in a couple of thin towels. I’ll bet it would be even better kept at a steady 25C.

  2. I love it that you did your own pod cast!!! What fun. And yes, homemade yogurt is much better than commercial. I used to just put it in a low oven overnight and voila, it made itself. And by the way, that bread is BEAUTIFUL–what do you mean “doesn’t look very pretty”? Are you out of your mind? A bread baker would give his starter to make a bread that looks like that. I hope you had gravlax and a cold beer to go with the pane.

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