Sunday, February 28, 2010

Yogurt-Making Tutorial

Here is the process I use to make my own yogurt. You might need to tweak these instructions to tailor them to your situation and taste.

Make sure all tools you use are VERY clean. Getting any bad bacteria into your yogurt will ruin it.

You will need:
-large sauce pan
-jars or plastic containers
-plain yogurt (to use as a starter)
-powdered milk and/or gelatin (optional)
-insulated cooler

I use powdered milk and gelatin in my recipe because I like the consistency better that way. It makes a firmer yogurt. It’s not a necessary ingredient but the result will be a softer yogurt.

STEP 1: Heat milk (and whisked-in powdered milk & gelatin) to 145° - 160°F.

STEP 2: Remove from heat and cool milk to about 125-130°F. If the milk is too hot you will kill the starter when you add it. If it's too cool you won't activate the cultures.

STEP 3: Inoculate with starter yogurt. (Plain, no sugar added, with LIVE cultures) Whisk starter yogurt into the milk and then pour into your containers.

STEP 4: Incubate @ about 130° for 4-6 hours. I do this by filling an insulated cooler with very hot water and letting it heat while I get the milk mixture ready. Then I pour out the water, put in my filled jars and refill with fresh, hot water up to the neck of the jars.

STEP 4 (continued): Wrap the cooler in towels or blankets to help hold in the heat and let it sit for 4-6 hours. Yogurt likes to be VERY STILL while it's culturing so be careful not to jostle it.

STEP 5: Remove jars from the cooler and refrigerate. The yogurt will firm up more after refrigeration.

Ingredients for each quart of yogurt:

4 cups milk
2 Tablespoons powdered milk
1 teaspoon gelatin
2 Tablespoon plain yogurt

Here is a link to a printable copy of my basic recipe:

If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask.