Sunday, February 26, 2012

DIY: Yogurt

Who else can't believe that February is almost over?  2012 is seriously flying by... 

I don't make resolutions for the New Year, but I do make a little list in my mind of things I want to do more of. And this year one of those things was to make more home dairy products.  I acquired this little gem of a book, Home Dairy, which gives detailed instructions and helpful tips for making all kinds of your own dairy.  I've already tried cheese and butter, and today I tackled yogurt.

It's so simple that I have a feeling this will be a repeated project every few weeks.  I never want to buy yogurt again!  

Here is how I made it...


Recipe:
slightly adapted from Home Dairy

4 cups whole, low-fat, or skim milk (I used skim)
3 Tablespoons live yogurt (make sure the container says it contains "live, active cultures") 
Or in place of the live yogurt you can use 1 packet dried yogurt culture.  


Heat the milk until it almost reaches boiling, about 180 degrees Fahrenheit.  A candy thermometer is very useful here. 


Remove milk from the heat and let cool until 110 - 115 degrees F.  Add 3 Tablespoons prepared yogurt or your dried yogurt culture.  I let my prepared yogurt come to room temp while I heated and cooled the milk before adding it.


Once fully incorporated, pour into glass jars.  I used recycled jars from pasta sauces, well washed of course.


Once in jars or containers for storing, let the yogurt temperature stay between 110 - 115 for about 6 hours.  I preheated my crockpot on low, then added the glass jars and secured the lid, and then turned the crockpot off.  This should give your yogurt a warm place to culture for the next 6 hours.  

Other methods include pouring the yogurt into a thermos, in a cooler with jars of hot water, or in a preheated but off oven.


Refrigerate and use within 1-2 weeks.  

Note: Homemade yogurt tends to be thinner in consistency than its store-bought counterpart.  If you prefer your yogurt to have a thick consistency, try adding 1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin in the first step while heating your milk.  Or you can also try adding dry powdered milk, 3-4 tablespoons during the first step.

15 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for this DIY I have been wanting to try this for a long time. Now maybe I will!!

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  2. I hope you do, Natasha! It's fun and simple, not to mention economical. :)

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  3. My sis used to make her own yogurt... I thought she was a hippy. (I'll bet you are too young to know the word...) Anyway, thanks for the tut. I'm going to try it.
    Hugs!

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  4. wow.. didn't know how complicated making yogurt can me. I make my own yogurt everyday and it is very simple. It doesn't need anyof things that are said here. I just boil the milk and then tranfer it to a different container and let it cool of. When the mil is luke warm, just add a table spoon of live yogurt and place the lid and live it out for 8 to 10 hours (it depends on the room temperature) and once done, you will see condensation on the lid when you open it, just refegerate it and enjoy it. Try it and see if this works. It works for me every single time.

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  5. Terri - I hope you try it! And I like hippies. ;)

    Radhika - good to know there are more ways to make yogurt! The recipe I followed probably just wants to ensure that proper culturing occurs during the incubation process.

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  6. If you want greek style yogurt just strain after it's thickened and save the whey for another use ie in bread making or pour on your plants!.

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    1. Awesome tip! I will have to try it, I'm assuming it's good plant food then? I never knew! :)

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    2. When you say live yogurt, do you mean the normal yogurt you buy in any grocery store? and what about different flavours? and fruit being added?

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    3. Yes, normal yogurt from the grocery store should say on the container somewhere that it contains live cultures. I li,e to add fruit preserves or fresh fruit just before serving. Enjoy!

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  7. I use a heating pad to keep the saucepan of milk warm while it's culturing. I cover it with towels. I let it culture for 12 hours. That seems to make it a bit thicker. Also I add milk powder to the milk when I heat it to 180 degrees.

    I like thick yogurt so after it's been cultured for 12 hours, I strain it in a colander or a large sieve lined with a couple of Handi-Wipes to get the Greek-style yogurt. I like Handi-Wipes better than cheesecloth as they're easier to rinse and reuse.

    I add sugar (about 1/2 cup for 1 quart milk) and a little vanilla extract to flavor the yogurt before adding the culture.

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    1. Thanks for the tips! I think I will try letting mine culture a bit longer next time to see if it makes it thicker. I don't like adding additional ingredients (powdered milk or gelatin) but will definitely give that a whirl - thanks! :)

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  8. I have been making yogurt daily for the last 34 years, and I do it the way Radhika has mentioned! My only suggestion would be to reduce the amount of yogurt you add to the cooled milk - I find that in summer, it needs just a teaspoonful, or else, the resulting yogurt becomes too sour. Even in winter, I seldom add more than two teaspoons. I do not preheat the oven, either, I just leave it in there and keep the oven closed, and it is done after 6 to 8 hours.

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    1. Wow, 34 years! That's awesome! Since it's just starting becoming quite hot here in SoCal I think I will try your suggestion of adding less yogurt to the milk and see how it turns out.

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  9. asekerli@hotmail.comMay 24, 2012 at 6:19 AM

    This is quite a long way to do it :). In Turkey we eat yogurt too much and I started making my own yogurt a few months ago ofcourse with my moms recipe.
    Just boil the milk, after it starts to boil start stirring for 5-10 minutes more so the water of the milk vaporises. Pour the milk into another cup, leave it to cool down, I use a natural pot. You can understand the heat is ok to add the yogurt by putting your finger into the milk, if the heat is cold enough not to burn your finger than it is time to add the yogurt. Mix 2 table spoon of yogurt with a little bit of room temperatured milk to make it liquid, Add this to the milk in the jar. Put a lid on top of the pot and wrap nicely with a blanket to keep it warm. After 4-5 hours yogurt is ready. You can keep it in the refigrator for 2-3 hours as it becomes more tasty than....
    Try this and let me know the result...

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  10. Here's a good way to watch your yogurt's content - do it yourself! This is a fairly simple recipe for an amazing yogurt. Well, this is something yummy to munch on at home. :)

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