Create Your Own Ingredients

I find it more cost-effective and much more to my liking to make many ingredients. Below is a list of a few ingredients I commonly make or grind myself along with tips on how can do so, too.
    Grind whole almonds, raw or roasted, in a blender or food processor until they form a paste. Or try using slivered almonds in an electric coffee or spice grinder. I wouldn't recommend using whole almonds in a coffee grinder (as me how I know this).
    Use the pulse feature on your food processor or blender to grind almonds into meal. Use whole almonds or blanched almonds, raw or roasted.
    Fill slow cooker with leftover chicken bones (I save ours in the freezer until we have enough) and cover with water. You can also add vegetable bits, such as onions, carrots, and celery. Add a splash of vinegar or lemon juice. Cook on low for 24-36 hours or until bones begin to soften. Strain out the bones and vegetable bits. I divide the broth into 1-2 c portions and store it in the freezer.
    Grind unsweetened coconut flakes into flour using a coffee grinder. I'd like to try this from a whole coconut, but I haven't yet. I'll be sure to update these instructions when I do.
    Scoop 2½ c of yogurt into a cheesecloth or other loose-weave cloth. Suspend over a bowl (we secure it with a rubber band over a 2 qt pitcher) and refrigerate for 24-36 hours. I usually add a pinch or two of salt once it's drained. If you use dairy milk, you can save the whey that drains out and use it for other purposes.
    Grind roasted peanuts in a blender or food processor until they form a paste. If you're just making a small amount, you could also use a coffee grinder.
    1. Heat 2½ c milk to 185°F and let cool to 110°F
    2. Add 1 T prepared yogurt and mix well
      • make sure to use a brand containing live and active cultures
      • once you've made your own yogurt, you can use that to start your next batch
    3. Pour into a covered jar or casserole dish and wrap securely in several layers of heavy cloth (I use a fleece throw folded in quarters)
    4. Set in a warm place away from drafts for 8-12 hours
    5. Keep refrigerated

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