Monday, April 7, 2014

I Made Yogurt- In A Crockpot- And It's Delicious

I have been dying to try my hand at making yogurt forever!  At first, I worried about the safety factor.  But, the more research I did and read about people who have made their own for years, the less of a worry it became.

Last night I decided to go for it. I am so glad I did!  I may never buy store bought yogurt again.  Not only was it tasty, but it was relatively easy.

I used ideas from many different recipes that I found on Pinterest. You can click on the word Pinterest in the previous sentence to see some I looked at.  I knew I wanted to try the crockpot method, so mostly that is what I looked up.

Some recipes rely on timing and senses. I wanted to rely on temperature to be extra safe.

Here are the materials you will need:

  • 1/2 gallon whole milk
  • 1/2 c powdered milk
  • Cooking thermometer
  • Crockpot
  • 1/2 c store bought plain yogurt w/ live active cultures
  • Something for stirring
  • Large Towel

Here's what I did:

  1. Pour milk into the crockpot
  2. Add dry milk and give it a stir
  3. Leave on until milk temperature reaches 180 degrees (about 1.5h on high, but could vary widely depending on your crockpot, so please use a thermometer
  4. When that temperature is achieved, turn off the crockpot. Remove the pan part from the heating element and take the lid off.
  5. Give a stir to mix throughout. 
  6. Let the mixture decline in temp to 115 degrees (no worries if it gets as low as 100). Stir occasionally.
  7. When this temperature is achieved, take out a cup or so (no need to actually measure) of the milk and pour into a small bowl with the store bought yogurt (Make sure it has live, active cultures- the carton will say it on it!).  Mix together and pour back into the crockpot.
  8. Now cover the crockpot again, wrap with large towel and place in oven without turning it on! 
  9. Let it sit there for 8-12 hrs
  10. Viola yogurt!

At this point, the yogurt should have a texture similar to the picture above.  To make a thicker yogurt (Greek style), place cheesecloth (coffee filters, paper towels, or napkins can do the trick as well) in a strainer with a bowl underneath.  You are filtering out the whey. Many people use the whey in place of water or milk in baked goods as it is very good for you.

There you have it!

Spoon this into small Rubbermaid type containers, mason jars, or what you have handy.  Be sure to take out 1/2 a cup to use as your starter for your next batch!

Flavor as you like.  Right now I am eating mine with fresh pineapple and a honey drizzle- YUM!

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