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Making Your Own Yoghurt

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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    Posted: 07 February 2016 at 12:37

Making Your Own Yoghurt


From Time-Life's Foods of the World - Middle Eastern Cooking, 1969:



A bowl of creamy yoghurt, accompanied by fresh fruit, is a cooling meal in the Middle East at any time of day. Desert nomads long ago discovered how to turn fresh milk into a long-lasting, semi-solid fermented food by adding a “starter” from a previous batch of soured milk. The product is called laban in Jordan, maast in Iran, yaourti in Greece and yoghurt in Turkey.


The best yoghurt is homemade yoghurt. Few Americans ever make it, possibly because like all living things, the bacterial cultures that transform milk into yoghurt are somewhat unpredictable, but you can experiment with the process, using unflavoured commercial yoghurt as the culture or “starter.” Pour one quart of milk into a heavy, 2- to 3-quart enameled casserole with a tightly fitting lid. Stirring constantly to prevent any skin from forming on the top, heat the milk slowly until it reaches a temperature of 180 degrees on a candy or deep-frying thermometre. Remove from the heat and, stirring occasionally, allow the milk to cool to lukewarm (110 degrees on the thermometre). Immediately stir in 1/4 cup of commercial yoghurt. Put the lid in place and wrap the top and sides of the casserole to keep it warm. Then place the casserole in a warm, draft-free spot where it can stand undisturbed. After 6 hours or so, remove the wrapping. At the stage the yoghurt should be jelled and somewhat firm. Transfer it to the refrigerator without shaking the casserole or stirring its contents, and chill the covered yoghurt for 4 hours, or until it is firm. A quarter-cup of it can serve as your “starter” next time.
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pitrow View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pitrow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 February 2016 at 10:51
I remember back when I was a kid my parents had a little contraption for incubating yogurt, but I don't ever remember them actually using. I might give this a try one of these days though, just for kicks. 
Mike
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gonefishin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 February 2016 at 12:40
have you tried it?

  This is on my list of stuff to make instead of buying store brand stuff.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 March 2016 at 19:34
Hi, Dan - 

I haven't tried this, yet, but I should! 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 March 2016 at 05:53
Haven't made it that way, Dan. But we have a yogurt maker; essentially a drum that keeps the culture at the proper temperature. As I recall, it makes about 1 1/2 quarts at a time.

We haven't used it in quite some time, and I'd be willing to swap it out for the right offer.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tom Kurth Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 March 2016 at 07:31
Is store bought (pasteurized) milk OK to use? Does the pot have to be enameled or will stainless steel cookware be alright?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gonefishin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 March 2016 at 10:53
   I'm going to see if I can get the other Instant pot that has a yoghurt setting...then I'll bring my other Instant pot to work.  I'd like to hear more on how the yogurt turned out though, what were your thoughts?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote HistoricFoodie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 March 2016 at 12:25
Store bought milk is just fine, Tom. We've used both whole milk and 2%, and both worked fine.

Consistency turns out about the same as commercial plain yogurt. It can be stiffened up somewhat by setting it to drain in a strainer, over a bowl, in the fridge. Depending on how long you leave it, you get everything from thickened yogurt, to Greek style, to yogurt cheese.

I've never made it in anything but the yogurt maker, which is some sort of engineering plastic. My guess is an enameled pot would be better, because dairy has a tendency to permanently stain SS. Glazed ceramic would likely be a good choice, too.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 March 2016 at 10:37
I'll see if I can get this made sometime before I die; it just makes sense to have it on hand, and there's no reason not to make it at home.

I would love to have a crock like the one in the photo of the opening post, but alas....Cry
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 February 2018 at 11:55
I am copying this over from another thread: some great information and "real-world experience" from John (Gunhaus) on making yoghurt:

Quote [W]e make yogurt with regular old pasteurized milk from the store and have had no troubles with setting for the most part. I don't have any of the newer gadgets for making it - we simply heat the milk to 200 in a coated cast iron dutch oven, and when cooled enough we inoculate with any plain yogurt containing live cultures. We try to keep it going, but admittedly we get behind and forget for a while and have to start over. (My neighbor and his wife have been using the same culture for 40 years non-stop! That's dedication) We just leave it in the oven (Off) during the "curing" phase. I heat the oven set at 180 while i am getting everything started, and turn it off about the time I get the milk heated to 200. By the time the milk is down to 110-115 or so, the little bit of residual heat in the oven and the cast iron seems to do the trick. It takes 4-6 hours usually to set up. MOST of the time it sets up into a nice creamy texture. If we get a batch that seems a little thin, we just use a strainer and a couple layers of cheese cloth and let it drain over night. That firms it up a fair amount as a rule. But usually just overnight in the fridge is enough to finish it the way we like it. It might work here if these styles are softer than you like.


His description makes it sound easy, and I'll hopefully give it a try, before too long.

I am also posting this link on the subject:

https://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-yogurt-at-home-cooking-lessons-from-the-kitchn-125070

I have not yet read it very thoroughly, so I can't comment on it; however, it was recommended to me a few weeks ago by the folks at FarmSteady when I enquired about any information they might have on making yoghurt.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 February 2018 at 12:23
Adding to the collective knowledge on the subject, here is a link to an ongoing discussion on the fermented dairy products of Scandinavia, including how to make various Scandinavian yoghurts:

http://foodsoftheworld.activeboards.net/scandinavias-fermented-and-cultured-milk-products_topic4958.html
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