Tag: yogurt

Frozen Peanut Butter Bark

We are breaking all traditions with this recipe! Peppermint bark is a chocolate treat generally made up of peppermint candy pieces captured in white chocolate on top of  a bed of dark chocolate. We usually find it  in  stores during  the second half of the year as we near holiday season. There have been many twists on this recipe over the years, and quite a few of them include peanut butter. However, this one has just about one thing in common with the original bark,  well,  maybe two. There is chocolate in this version, and the last step of the recipe is similar since you break it apart to form large pieces of bark.

Perhaps the most dramatic difference between the original and this recipe is that this one sets in the freezer  and remains there to deliver a frozen bark that will certainly find a place in your recipe box right along  with your  other bark recipes. The best twist in this recipe is the fact that you can make it so very quickly. It takes just a few minutes to mix up the ingredients, spread it thin on parchment paper and place  it to the freezer. A few minutes later, just break it up and enjoy! Maybe you’ll be pleased to know this version of bark is much lower in calories than the chocolate version, so you can enjoy several pieces at a time. It makes a great snack too, so you don’t have to just limit it to dessert.

Our frozen peanut butter bark features  yogurt as its  main ingredient. You can keep  this recipe extra lean by using no fat or low-fat Greek Style yogurt, or you can have a more satiating snack by making it with whole fat yogurt. The texture will be thicker and smoother with the full fat version as well, but the taste is only slightly different.

Sometimes breaking the rules just makes all the sense, and the results are better than one can imagine! With  our version of bark, you’ll get a healthy dose of plant protein from the peanut butter, combined with the protein from yogurt.

If you don’t feel quite daring enough to leave all traditions behind, just adapt this recipe a bit. Instead of the almond butter drizzle, add in the crushed peppermint candy pieces to  the mixture as well as  the  topping. Just make sure the peppermint is nearly crushed due to the time it will spend in the freezer to harden. As with all our recipe creations, we love to hear what you’ll do with it next! Share your creations with us on any social media  platform of your choice, or in the comments below.

Frozen Peanut Butter Bark by Once Again Nut Butter Blog

Frozen Peanut Butter Bark

 1 cup of plain yogurt (or vanilla)

2 tablespoons of Once Again Crunchy Peanut Butter

1 squeeze pack of Once Again Almond Butter (or a tablespoon from the jar)

1 tablespoon of chocolate chips

Mix yogurt with peanut butter, then spread  it on parchment paper until you achieve about a quarter-inch thickness. Drizzle the almond butter over  the mixture  and sprinkle with  chocolate chips. Place  it in  the freezer for 45 minutes, and then break  apart  with your hands and place pieces in airtight container. Store in the  freezer.  This bark  melts quickly when left at room temperature. Enjoy!

DIY Yogurt: It’s Easy!

DIY Yogurt1If you told me a few years ago I would be this excited over yogurt, I would have been shocked and maybe a little worried, too. But now, my family and I enjoy yogurt almost on a daily basis, and so when I learned that you can make yogurt at home without any fancy equipment or specialty skills, I was intrigued. My mother learned this technique from a friend and passed it on to me with a few of her tips.  I then perfected this process and made it foolproof!

The words yogurt and probiotics usually are found  right next to each other when discussing gut health. Probiotic, which literally means “for life”, refers to the living organisms present in fermented foods like yogurt which are responsible to many health benefits, including improving immune system health and preventing gastrointestinal issues such as constipation, inflammation and diarrhea. Consuming yogurt even just a couple of times weekly can help you maintain regular bowel movements while meeting some nutrient needs including your getting enough calcium, vitamin B2, vitamin B12, potassium and magnesium (these are specific to cow’s milk yogurt as opposed to coconut or almond milk yogurts).

Are you ready to learn how to make your probiotic-rich snack at home?

Making your own yogurt is really quite simple; choosing the right starting ingredients will determine the quality of your end product. Choose whole- fat milk, organic if possible, and you may use a yogurt starter kit, but you don’t really need it.  You can just use a plain (organic as well, if possible) full- fat yogurt as starter. Choose a plain yogurt free of any additives or artificial colors: the only ingredients should be live cultures and milk. You will also need the following:  a large pot, a large glass bowl, towels and stirring spoons. If you have a food thermometer to double, check your temperatures the first time you make it, it helps; however,  it is optional.

What you’ll need:

DIY Yogurt

  • 34 ounces of milk
  • 6 ounces of plain yogurt

Directions:

  1. diy yogurt 5Boil 34 ounces (1 liter) of milk over medium heat. The boiling point will be reached at 185 degrees Fahrenheit, but otherwise, you can tell when it reaches the boiling point when it starts to froth. Stir constantly, that so it will boil evenly and avoid burning. Once it boils,  take milk off the heat. Now let it reach about 100 degrees; if you have a thermometer, you can just watch the temperature as it drops. Or, wash your hands and insert your pinky finger in the milk: when you can hold it in the milk for 10 seconds, it is ready for the next step! Wait a few minutes before testing it the first time — you don’t want to burn your finger, of course!
  2. In a large glass bowl, place the 6 ounces of plain yogurt, and add just ½ cup of the hot milk to the yogurt and mix well. Now add the rest of the milk to the glass bowl.
  3. Cover the bowl with an airtight lid. From this point on, the active cultures are very delicate and are “working” on turning the milk into yogurt. Wrap it with a towel to converse the heat. You can also place the bowl inside a thermos bag instead of wrapping with cloth.
  4. Take the wrapped dish to your “holding” space. This space needs to be somewhere DIY yogurt4without ventilation, a place that will maintain the warm temperature. You may use a microwave, a corner in your pantry, a crockpot, or my personal favorite, the oven. Of course all those devices, including the oven will be off! It is just a safe place where your yogurt won’t be disturbed and have time to rest while staying sufficiently warm ..  A minimum of 8 hours is recommended to complete this process, but you can l let it incubate  up to 12 hours. The longer you wait, the thicker your yogurt will be.
  5. Now you are ready to enjoy your yogurt and flavor it anyway you want it. Don’t forget to save some so that you can make your next batch. You can use 6oz of your own yogurt for that purpose.

Flavoring the yogurt is  without a doubt the best part of the yogurt-making experience! Use ½ cup of your yogurt and add 2 tablespoons of your favorite Once Again Nut Butter. Top it off with coconut flakes and chocolate chips for a desert-like  treat that is healthy and homemade. A family favorite is our “peanut butter cookie yogurt.” We add peanut butter to plain yogurt and stir in a little honey and mini dark chocolate chips.

For a dairy-free version you can use coconut milk, or even almond milk. Although I have not tried this process yet, there are recipes for it, and it involves the same basic steps as described above with some minor modification and additions. If you have made your own dairy free yogurt before, please share your tips with us!

… have a deliciously healthy day,

Carolina