DIY Yogurt

Another homemade fermented food to share! I happened to arrive on the farm at a time when there is plenty of milk to go around, and then some, thanks to the calves. All the extra milk around means there has been an opportunity to make yogurt and/or cheese everyday. With yogurt being as easy as it is, I chose to take advantage and finally partake in something I’ve been meaning to learn for years. There have been some cheese cultures ordered so expect for cheese recipes in the near future.

Below is the recipe Rebecca (thanks Rebecca!) taught me last week. I intend to always follow this as it makes for some pretty amazing yogurt! So get your thermometer and make some yourself!

Yogurt

1. Slowly heat 10 L milk in large pot on stove, stirring frequently to avoid burning the milk. Heat until milk has reached 82-84 degrees C.

2. Once milk has reached the right temperature, transfer pot into an cold water bath (kitchen sink works well). Allow pot to cool in bath until the milk has reached 44 degrees C. You may to need to drain the water a few times and refill with cold water as the hot pot will make the sink water warm and slow the cooling process.

2. When milk is between 42- 44 degrees C, stir in roughly 1/2 to 3/4 L of plain yogurt for a starter culture. Make sure the plain yogurt is labeled with “contains live ingredients” to ensure the proper live bacteria. Here you can eyeball it and not worry about specific measurements. If you do want to follow a “proper” measurement – 1 tbsp of yogurt stater per L of milk will do the trick.

3. Stir yogurt into milk until most large clumps are separated.

4. Transfer milk into quart glass jars or any storage container of your choice. Cap the jar tightly and place in pre-heated insulated cooler. Close the lid of cooler and place in a warm spot where it will not be disturbed.

5. Check yogurt at 24 hours. At this point the yogurt should be settled and relatively thick and the “perfect sour”. If you prefer more sour yogurt simply let it sit in the warm cooler for longer.

6. Transfer labeled yogurt container(s) into refrigerator and enjoy!

7. Be sure to save some yogurt for the next batch :)

*Tailor the recipe to however much yogurt you want. We are clearly swimming in milk over here for 10-12L is nothing – but it’s probably a bit much for most individuals. And as always be sure to use organic milk.

**Make vanilla yogurt by adding the seeds from a vanilla bean to some of your batch. Simply scrap the inside of a vanilla bean and stir seeds into yogurt before you pour into individual jars/containers. For 2 L of vanilla yogurt, I used the seeds from one bean. Tailor to your preferences!

Note there is nothing low fat about my recipe – we use fresh milk from the cows. If you choose to go the low-fat route, it may result in a less thick yogurt.

Enjoy!