Yogurt: a delightful treat; whether plain or sweetened, it’s a delight to your taste buds and to your body because of the good bacteria it places in your body. This article is to direct you in making yogurt.
You will need: a saucepan; a stove; raw milk and some already-cultured yogurt.
Not everyone can come by raw milk, but it’s very popular in our house, as is the yogurt. The dictionary describes yogurt as “milk fermented by bacteria to give a tangy or slightly sour flavor and a lightly set or thick and creamy consistency”, but it’s also known as “clabber”. The term “yogurt” sounds more appealing to me . . . now I know why they changed the name!
Pour your milk and into the saucepan, or pot. Heat to almost boiling. We normally let it get warm enough to where there’s a film over the milk and small air bubbles rise to just below that film. Then we let it cool back to down to where it’s finger-comfortable.
Place about 1/2 of yogurt per quart ( the more culture you add, the thicker the yogurt will be). The yogurt in the bottom of the jar is already cultured, and without it, the yogurt won’t make. This gives the milk the bacteria it will grow. You can buy plain yogurt at the grocery store. Make sure it’s plain with live, active cultures, and not fat-free.
Normally, we put the jars of warm milk with the small amount of yogurt in on the bottom rack of the oven, with the oven off and the light on. The light gives it warmth so the bacteria can grow and the enclosed area shuts out coolness and keeps in the warmth. Let it sit 6-8 hrs. (overnight is fine) in the oven. If your house is cooler, it may take longer; if your house is warm, it might take less time. Move to refrigerator.
You know it’s done when you can tip the jar sideways and it’s thick as yogurt should be.
Another way to do it: place the jars of milk and yogurt in a cooler and fill it up to the about 1/2 in. below the top of the jars with water that is just hot enough that you can hold your finger in comfortably (like the yogurt when it’s warming). Let it sit 6-8 hrs. and check to see if it’s done. Put it in the refrigerator when it’s done.
Maple syrup in the yogurt is Farmer Johnny’s favorite. Also,putting fresh fruit, honey, vanilla, jams, jellies and preserves is good in it, and it’s so much better for you than the store-bought.
A note about yogurt from Claude Aubert in Les Aliments Fermentes Traditionnels:
The fermentation of milk makes it more assimilable to persons with lactose intolerance because a large part of the lactose is transformed into lactic acid, and because the presence of the enzyme lactase in fermented milk products helps break down lactose in the digestive tract. Furthermore, a portion of the milk protein (casein) is decomposed, liberating the amino acids of which it is formed. Research shows that proteins in yogurt are digested twice as quickly as those of nonfermented milk.