Do you know this feeling when you are food shopping and your favourite brand of yogurt is sold out?
You are in a hurry and just grab a jar, only to find out at home that it was the wrong kind.
And the choices these days are: Greek yogurt, organic plain yogurt with no additives, varying in quality from rather liquid to firm (what is added to make it this obnoxiously firm?). I will not mention skimmed milk yogurt (this is my subjective opinion), (artificial) vanilla flavoured, sugared, fructose or saccharine enhanced kind, preservatives etc.
I prefer my yogurt in organic quality, to be used as a base for my fruit and Chia seed breakfast or in salad dressings, lassis, dips and sauces. And Roco, my dog, gets at least one yogurt per week in his food and loves it.
Years ago I owned a yogurt maker, a handy machine that got lost somehow (read: I did not use it that often). Maybe I should start looking for a replacement and checked it out:
In the end I decided against it for various reasons:
My kitchen may be big but it definitely cannot hold any more domestic appliances.
I want to downsize, I do not want to enlarge my ecological footprint.
I want to use my pretty Weck 140ml Preserving Jar, they are not only pretty but can be reused many times.
I want to reduce my use of plastic in my household.
Next step: I needed a recipe for homemade yogurt. Google gave me the answer: The Frugal Girl makes her own yogurt and on top has lots of advice to offer!
My first go at it:
Preparation time: 20 minutes (+ 3 hours in steamer or cooler)
Yield: 8 jars of 140 ml
1 L of organic and regional milk
1 small cup of organic plain yogurt
Place your jars and lids in a large pot. Fill with 3 – 4 cm (1 inch) water and cover pot with lid. Boil for 10 minutes.
Sterilize your jars
Simultaneously put your milk in a heavy bottomed pot and heat to 90° C (185 – 190° F)
Heat up milk to 90° C (185° F)
Cool the milk to 55° C (120° F) by placing it into your sink filled with cold water
Add 150 g of yogurt and integrate well by using a whisk
Pour the mixture into your hot jars and put the lids (and bands) on
All ready to go into the steamer for 3 hours
Heat steamer to 55° C (120° F), put your jars in and let them sit there for three hours
You can use a cooler instead of the steamer (put a gallon of 55° C hot water in it before adding your jars, shut cooler lid and leave it in a warm place)
I tried some jars with a band and some without: it does not make a difference
Add 1 – 2 tablespoons of natural vanilla essence to your cooling milk
Pretty, is it not?
The result: a nice yogurt with the right consistency, with a rich and creamy taste. On top it is cheap and easy to produce. The yogurt should keep for a month stored in the fridge.
And now I am off to enjoy my first homemade yogurt with strawberries and Chia seeds. Bon appétit!