Friday, October 15, 2010

Yogurt Made Easy!

This is the easiest yogurt you can make! I have wanted our family to eat more 'live' yogurt for the nutritional benefits of eating 'good' bacteria. I didn't want to buy the artificial stuff. Well that meant we would be spending a pretty penny for everyone to only eat 1/2 cup of yogurt a day. The kids love it so they always eat more. As I ran the numbers of what it was costing us to buy this yogurt, I realized we couldn't afford to keep buying it.

This made me pursue homemade recipes with the biggest stipulation: it had to be a user friendly recipe and easy to make. Well here it is...

8 cups raw milk* (I use whole milk for a creamier yogurt)
1/3 cup tofu powder** (click here to learn more)
1/2 cup live yogurt starter***
1/2 cup real maple sugar (optional)

*we are blessed to have a certified dairy where we can purchase raw milk. You can use pasteurized milk but raw milk is definitely better for you. Perhaps I should devote a future post to: Why raw milk?

**The tofu powder helps the yogurt have a rich creamy texture.

***I started my yogurt with Dannon yogurt which is a live active yogurt. All the next batches, I just made sure I had 1/2 cup of my homemade yogurt available for the next batch.

Heat milk to 185 degrees. Your milk will just begin to frothing. You don't want it to boil and be careful at the frothing point as it will burn easily. I used a wire whisk at the frothing time to keep it from scalding.

Turn off burner and let the milk cool to 110 degrees. You can speed up this cooling process by setting your pan in cold water.

In a separate bowl, whisk the yogurt and tofu powder and maple syrup (optional) together and add to the cooled milk. Place in clean mason jars and pull out your crock pot! I put about 1" to 2" of water in the crock and set it on warm. Put a towel over the jars to hold the heat in. If you crock runs hot, like mine, turn off the crock periodically so the yogurt doesn't cook. You only want a warm environment. Let the yogurt 'cure' for about 4 to 6 hours OR when the yogurt mixture looks like pudding.

This is soooo easy to make and now you have inexpensive yogurt. If you didn't add maple syrup you can add sweetener (honey, maple syrup, xagave) with each bowl. We add fruit (blueberries, strawberries, peaches) and now have yogurt just like you buy in the store! Yum.

1 comment:

  1. Name: Sharon K

    Comment: I recently found your site and blog and look forward to gleaning from it to improve my homemaking skills.
    I want to try your yogurt recipe but have a question. I cannot have soy products and wondered if leaving our the tofu powder greatly alters the quality of the yogurt? I made yougurt daily when I lived in India and all I had to do was leave it in the 'kitchen' overnight. It was so hot constantly that in the morning I had wonderful yogurt. Since returning to the States I have not been able to master yogurt like I did there. I am hoping this recipe and method will help.

    My reply:
    You can use non-fat instant milk powder as your thickener. We use the tofu because we have it available due to one of my children's milk allergy and we like the flavor. Happy yogurt making!

    Heads Up: It does make a difference in the texture of your yogurt having the thickener. I tried to make it without the tofu and it was way too runny. So you do need to use a milk powder or tofu powder.