We’ve been making our own yoghurt for a few weeks and it’s been mostly successful however we’re still learning and have not yet perfected our process – this latest batch didn’t ferment as, I suspect, I allowed it to cool too quickly.
Here are a few resources that are helpful if you wish to make your own yoghurt.
- Your first batch is always the hardest.
- You can use any kind of milk, including whole milk, 2%, 1%, nonfat, pasteurized, homogenized, organic, raw, diluted evaporated, dry powdered, cow, goat, soybean, and more.
- All yogurt needs “good” bacteria. The easiest way to add this is to use existing yogurt. The first time you make your own yogurt, use store-bought plain yogurt. Be certain it has “active cultures” on the label.
- Alternatively, instead of existing yogurt you can use freeze-dried bacteria cultures (available in specialty stores), which are more reliable as a starter.
- Using a double boiler makes it easier to control the temperature.
- If your oven doesn’t have a pilot light but does have an oven light, preheating the oven to the desired temperature, turning it off, and then leaving the oven light on to maintain the temperature.
- Another method is to turn your oven on and then off again periodically. Be careful that it doesn’t get too hot.
- To check the oven temperature, you can put your candy thermometer in a bowl of water inside the oven.
- Other methods for keeping the yogurt warm are: hot water in a sink, a stove burner, a crock-pot, a warming tray, a large thermos, a heating pad, a sunny window, in your car on a sunny day, etc. Just use your thermometer and best judgment.
- The longer the mixture incubates, the thicker and more tangy the yogurt will be.
- Putting your yogurt in the freezer to cool it before to moving it to the refrigerator will result in a smoother consistency.
- Canned pie filling, jams, maple syrups, and ice-cream fudges are good flavorings.
- For a delicious appetizer, use your yogurt to make labneh cheese.
- Using a yogurt maker makes the incubation process a lot easier. It automatically maintains the proper temperature and you don’t need to use the oven or watch the temperature. Most come with individual glass jars to put the yogurt in.
- Some food dehydrators, such as Ronco induction type, can be used as yogurt makers too. Read the instructions in the manual.