Notes from the Green Party MEP for East of England. Biographical reflections on life as an MEP. Longer reflections and discussions on issues relating to policy, the good life, justice, equality, anti-austerity economics and the future of the planet. This is also a forum for exchanging ideas on how to tread lightly on the planet and avoid supporting exploitation and corrupt practices. Here we go...

Sunday, 28 October 2007

How to make your own semi-skimmed milk: method 2

Here's another method of making your own semi-skimmed milk, easily done if you're making something with hot milk.

Pour the milk into a milk pan and warm it over the heat. When it's hot, pour it off gently in such a way that it leaves the skin behind in the pan.

The rich creamy residue can be given to the cat, or washed away with the washing up water (though that's a tragic waste of resources, when there are hungry people who would be glad of it...). I believe that's how they make clotted cream so I suppose you could collect it and make a home made version of clotted cream that way.

NB you can't use precisely this method for microwave hot drinks and sauces, but you can do something similar by skimming the skin off afterwards from the finished product.

Saturday, 6 October 2007

How to make your own semi-skimmed milk

If it's true that the semi-skimmed milk from the milkman is still homogenised (see discussion here) then the answer seems to be to buy natural full cream milk from the milkie and, if you prefer something skinnier for putting in your tea, make it yourself.

Here's one way (how my parents used to do it). You take the foil cap off the bottle without upending it or shaking it. You pour off the first inch or so, which is largely the cream, into a small cream jug, and leave the semi-skimmed milk in the bottle. You may need to use a teaspoon vel. sim. to scrape the cream out of the top of the bottle if it's well stuck.

Then you serve the creamy bit with porridge, or in your coffee, or with fruit salad or give it to the cat. The milk in the bottle is relatively low fat and can be used for whatever you want the low fat sort for.

This is technologically simple and requires no specialist equipment. If you don't have a small cream jug you can use an espresso cup or even an old fish-paste jar.

The disadvantage is that it's a bit inaccurate. Because of the rules of physics, some of the thinner stuff creeps out as you pour off the cream, so the creamy bit can turn out to be a little disappointing when you pour it on your porridge. What looked like a decent jug of cream turns out to be a thin layer of cream on a thick layer of watery milk. But there's not much problem with the thin stuff left in the bottle.