To the test: a yogurt maker for your home

I’m always keen to try out a new kitchen gadget. So when the Judge Yogurt Maker landed on my doorstep I couldn’t wait to start creating my own yogurt. I mean who doesn’t love a big bowl of fruit, yogurt and nuts – a wonderfully refreshing way to start the day. And health giving, too.

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A bowl of yogurt topped with tasty berries

The compact machine comes with seven 15oml jars with different coloured lids, which makes it look very pretty. All you need is a litre of milk and a pot of live yogurt to get started. Simply heat the milk, then let it cool and divide the yogurt and milk between the pots. You can add chopped fruit and honey, too, to create different flavours. Then turn on your machine and let it do its magic.

The process takes eight hours and you can hear the odd little click and whir emanating from the machine, though it’s generally a pretty silent operation. Switch it on before you go to bed and you’ll have your very own freshly-made yogurt waiting for you in the  morning.

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The yogurt maker doing its magic

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Pretty jars can be put straight into the fridge for storage

I also discovered this powder that you can buy from Holland & Barrett. Simply mix it with water and turn on the machine. The Peaches & Cream flavour was delicious as was the Greek Honey. I couldn’t quite believe that some powder and water would produce yummy yogurt…but it did. So simple.

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I’d recommend the Judge Yogurt Maker highly if you’re a family of dedicated yogurt eaters. Once you’ve made your first batch you can keep using it as the live yogurt to add to milk to make more, so you’ll be able to keep the family in supply for ever, in theory.

And if you’re not a dedicated yogurt eater, maybe it’s time to start. It has a raft of health benefits: the probiotics in it help to increase the good bacteria in your system which adds with digestion and your immune system. It’s also a good source of Vitamin B, Calcium, Potassium and Magnesium which means it’s good for your bones.

As well as being the ideal breakfast food, yogurt is also great in marinades as it tenderises meat and it’s a useful baking ingredient to have at hand.

And now you can have the satisfaction of making your very own. Why wouldn’t you?

The Judge Yogurt Maker is £34.94 on amazon.co.uk

Recipe idea: Beautiful berry and yogurt breakfast

So my niece Kirstin is in town for a while, visiting from Australia. She loves food and cooking like me, and she’s also a great photographer. The perfect combination for my kitchen, and time to create some food that looks and tastes lovely, too.

Breakfast seems like the perfect place to start, especially as I love berries and they are so abundant this time of year. This is a totally yummy breakfast treat.

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Bring on the berries for breakfast

Serves 2

500g yogurt of your choice (I love Yeo Valley Organic Lemon Curd )

1 handful blueberries

1 handful raspberries

1 handful blackberries

2 tbsps chopped hazelnuts

2 good drizzles of runny honey

Pour the yogurt into a large bowl. Place the berries on top, sprinkle with hazelnuts and drizzle with honey. Tuck in and enjoy.

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A stunning close-up.

The beautifully vibrant green bowl is part of the Premier Housewares Eden Bamboo Tableware range. Perfect for barbecues and picnics (imagine summer salads) or in this case to serve a tasty (and healthy) alfresco breakfast for two. The range comes in three colour choices, is lightweight, strong and easy to clean – and it looks great, too. You can find out more and buy some of these lovely products by clicking on  http://www.homemakersonline.co.uk/search/eden

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Breakfast has never looked prettier