I finally got an edible batch of yogurt.
I know–there are a zillion fabulous recipes out there for making yogurt using a crockpot or a cooler or a heating pad (I’ve seen them on Pinterest and my friends’ posts)….but nothing I’ve tried has succeeded. So I bit the bullet and bought a Dash Greek Yogurt Maker for $10 at TJ Maxx.
From everything I’d read (since I had zero personal successful experience), homemade yogurt tends to be a bit thinner than storebought, so I figured homemade Greek should be somewhere between storebought Greek and storebought “regular” — just what I was hoping for.
Five cups of whole milk = 2 1/2 cups Greek yogurt (or more “regular” yogurt, if you stir back in some of the whey).
The first thing I did was heat the milk to the requisite 185 degrees and let it cool down….too far. Bother. Now I had to heat it back up to 90 to stir in the yogurt starter. Easy peasy. Or maybe not.
I turned on the burner, put in the thermometer, and at about 87 degrees, my sweetie and my son-in-law came home, so of course I went to greet them. And got involved in a conversation. And totally forgot I was cooking.
While I finishing up some computer work, I kept thinking I smelled something cooking. Well, that would be silly. What would I be cooking? What’s that sizzling sound? Oh, my!
Now at 212 degrees and boiled all over the stovetop…the milk had to cool down. Again. And I knew the final product would now be grainy because I had cooked the proteins too much. But I had five cups of milk invested in this, by golly. Thankfully, the rest went more smoothly.
After the milk mixture had heated 8.5 hours in the yogurt maker (with LED count-down timer), I poured the yogurt into the Greek strainer (included) over the straining container (included), popped on the lid (you guessed it–included), and refrigerated till morning. Two hours is the recommended Greek-ing time, but I wanted to go to bed.
In the morning, I had a lovely lump of Greek yogurt about the consistency of cottage cheese or ricotta cheese. And a LOT of whey (2 cups, to be exact.)
What to do with all the whey?…. http://www.theprairiehomestead.com/2011/06/16-ways-to-use-your-whey.html
(That’s whey on the left.)
The grandboys loved the yogurt thick and plain. Me, not so much a plain-yogurt gal as a vanilla type, so I thinned mine very slightly with some of the whey, then added a bit of (homemade) vanilla and some honey to mine, then garnished with pomegranate seeds and chopped nuts. My yummy–and healthy–snack!