Saturday, February 9, 2013

Mackerel, Penguins and Yogurt!

It's been a busy week onboard Steadfast.  We started out on a mooring in Spanish Wells, but when the weather flattened to "dead calm", we pulled up and headed for the anchorage in Royal again.  We have the best of two worlds here:  the calm and security of the inner harbour of SW and the wild freedom of an open anchorage at Royal.  

We picked up a passenger/fishing buddy as we left SW and headed to the reef outside.  Our afternoon of trolling en route was thrilling beyond expectations.  

Our great haul consisted of three Mahi and one King Mackerel. Two not pictured here, were the one that threw the hook when I had him half way to the boat and the biggest MONSTER barracuda, we cut loose.   Nelson took it all in stride, or should I say, he slept through it all, undisturbed.

When the first large Mahi hit my lure, I tried to stop him from stripping the scant line on my reel.  It was screaming out faster than I could crank down the drag and stop him.  Here is the result of being silly enough to think clamping my thumb down on it would help.

Our sojourn in Royal included a lively potluck supper (4 boats), richly supplied with fresh fish, and several days of lazy reading and beach runs for Admiral Lord Nelson.  Late on Thursday, we moved again, back to SW, where we have free wifi.  Captain B had a webinar scheduled for early Friday that he couldn't miss.  

Again, more rollicking boat gatherings and fun in the galley.  I've been making my own yogurt and getting pretty good at tweaking the recipe.  I like mine thick and rich; none of that runny, low fat drivel for me!

First, I set the kettle on boil.  The thermos needs to be heated to the max before we start.

Then, I assemble my ingredients:  Nido full-fat milk powder, 2% milk, and two Tbsp. of the last batch as "starter".  Back in my food co-op days, I used to use low-fat milk powder and was never really satisfied with the results.  Now that I've been introduced to Nido, 3/4 cup of powdered to 1 cup of 2% gives me the just-right results I love.

I heat the milk to a little more than 120 degrees F before I add it to the powder, stirring the mixture until it cools to between 110 and 120 degrees.  Hotter than 120 will kill the active yogurt starter, and cooler than 110 will not enhance the growth of the new culture.  Once the temperature is correct, I pour it into the wide-mouth thermos, shake it well, then set it in a quiet corner for 7 hours to fulminate.  If you leave it too long, like overnight, it becomes too tangy.

My favourite Son-in-law made this fish-shaped platter for me as a Christmas present.  It gets rave reviews every time I show it off.  One gentleman asked if SIL would make more and sell them.

These were my first effort at making penguins, a la post by one of my blogging buddies (I can't remember which one or I would certainly link you to her--groan!!!)  I've done them a second time and they were much cleaner looking and easier once I got into a smoother rhythm of rolling in the Cream Cheese.

News from home this week is all about the SnowDays, the skiing and the hot chocolate toddies.  Looks like we are all enjoying life as we find it, here or there.  Until next time, keep the faith, stand firm and look forward in the sure hope of our Salvation.

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