Learning How to Make Yogurt

March 13, 2010

There’s a recipe for homemade yogurt in one of my cookbooks that is just too impractical. The ingredients are things we never buy and the directions sound time consuming. Well, last week I stumbled upon an incredibly easy recipe and I just had to try it. I love yogurt! I need yogurt. It packs a healthy dose of probiotics and I just finished a regimen of antibiotics for Strep. What a happy coincidence!

The recipe I used came from Tasty Kitchen. I only used half the recipe in case it didn’t work. I also melded the directions with those several pages from my cookbook. Mainly this included sterilizing everything that I was going to use to make the yogurt. I just got over a bad infection so this was important for me. I don’t believe it was necessary and it’s not part of the recipe. Here’s a picture of what I used:

2 3/4 cups of milk
1/4 cup of cream
2 Tbsp of plain yogurt for starter (with live and active cultures)

The directions say to heat the milk and cream in a heavy saucepan or double boiler to 180°F. The double boiler keeps the milk from burning and cooking unevenly. It also slows down the process, so there’s less chance of overheating the milk. I don’t have a double boiler so I used a stew pot full of hot water and placed my saucepan in it. I tried not to stir too much because the directions say this will make a tarter yogurt. When the milk reached 180°F I took the pan out to cool. I filled my stew pot with cold water and gave the saucepan a water bath to cool the milk mixture to 110°F. The water bath wasn’t necessary but it speeds up the process.

Then I poured a little milk into my measuring cup and added the yogurt starter. I stirred it gently until it was well mixed and then added it to the milk in my pan. I stirred that and then poured it into a quart jar. If you don’t have one a bowl would work fine. I had a lid for my jar, but you can also use plastic wrap to seal your bowl.

Now comes the incubation period. The yogurt has to sit for atleast 6 hours at 90-110°F. I used my oven and a candy thermometer to monitor the temperature. Occasionally I turned the oven on for a few seconds to keep the desired temperature. I also checked the yogurt (gently) to see if it was setting. I like a custard style yogurt so this took awhile.

There was a blip in my yogurt making. I was reheating the oven and got distracted. A few minutes later I looked over to see the oven had gotten pretty hot! I quickly rescued the yogurt but I was really unsure how it would turn out after that.

Thankfully, it worked! Now we have homemade yogurt. I am just in awe that this is even possible! It’s good too! This quart jar will probably be gone in a week but it would keep for 2 weeks in the fridge. We will be saving some for our next starter. Maybe this will be the year of bread and yogurt!

I used Sense to Save to calculate the cost in case you’re curious: 73¢! That’s £0.48! Next time it will be even less!


3 Responses to “Learning How to Make Yogurt”

  1. defendtucson Says:

    awesome work! Let me know how it works for a starter, I am considering trying to create one this week…

  2. prerrnamirchi Says:

    Like your step-by-step illustrated approach. I often make yogurt at home and am a big fan of it. http://inspiredtobake.wordpress.com/2010/02/21/yogurt-you-can-make-it/ Hope u’re better now. Freshly made yogurt should take care of that :)

  3. Laurel Says:

    I love the step by step tutorial! I have been making yogurt, but have not added the cream. I’ll have to try that.
    Just found this site, and I love it!

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