I was in a yogurt crisis. I sick of eating yogurts with fake this and fake that and I was tired of eating yogurts with ingredient lists that were as long as my grocery list.
For example...here is an ingredient list from a popular kind:
Cultured Pasteurized Grade A Low Fat Milk, Sugar, Strawberries, Modified Corn Starch, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Nonfat Milk, Kosher Gelatin, Citric Acid, Tricalcium Phosphate, Natural Flavor, Pectin, Colored with Carmine, Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin D3.
First, what are some of those things!? Second, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is an ingredient that I tell my clients to AVOID (Sara B Consulting Principle #3) and third, if the yogurt doesn't contain high amounts of added sugar it usually contains some type of "fake sugar."
Of course, I had my favs amongst the "clean" yogurts...Stoneyfield, Fage Greek Yogurt, Cultural Revolution (made right here in Kalona!) but they were just too darn expensive to buy in the amount that I LOVE yogurt. So I needed a solution.
Fage O% ingredients:
Grade A Pasteurized Skimmed Milk, Live Active Yogurt Cultures (L. Bulgaricus, S. Thermophilus)
THE SOLUTION: HOMEMADE YOGURT
While visiting my brother Matt and his wife Dorcha in Montrose, CO I enjoyed eating loads of his creamy homemade yogurt.......I then thought to myself "why wasn't I doing this!?!?!"
I could enjoy the many wonderful health benefits of yogurt...live active cultures for digestive health, calcium for our bones and possible reduction of fat storage, protein for our muscles...without the nasty stuff and in a cost effective way!
So I jumped on the computer and bought myself a Yogourmet!
I was giddy the day it arrived at my doorstep!
Ingredients and instructions to make yogurt:
There are a TON of ways to go about this and I encourage you to research some, but here is the way I went about my second batch (my first batch did not turn out....it is a trial and error recipe)
You need a "starter"....you can buy yogurt starters
OR you can start with a yogurt that has no "binding agents" in it like pectin or gelatin. I used Fage Greek Yogurt 0% (on sale for $.99 and will be multiplied into a gazillion servings!)
Temperature in VERY important in making yogurt so PAY attention while cooking.
Pour 2L of milk (I used Robert's 1% because you need some fat...my brother uses whole) into a double boiler or pot.
A note on Robert's Dairy: they are hormone free AND local!
Heat milk till it gets to 180F or just to a boil.
Allow milk to cool to 108-112F. You can speed this up by placing the pot in the sink filled with cool water.
Pour chilled milk into the inner container of the yogurt maker. Add the starter (yogurt). Stir until mixed in. (You can add powdered milk here for a creamier yogurt...haven't tried this yet)
Place lids on the yogurt maker, plug in (red light on), and ferment away!
Mine took about 10hours (overnight) to get to the desired thickness. To stop incubation place inner yogurt container in fridge for about 8 hours. There is a layer of liquid on top...you can either stir this in for a thin yogurt or drain for a thicker.
Yogurt stays fresh in fridge for about 3 weeks!
You can also drain yogurt with a cheese cloth for a cheese/sour cream/dip substitute.
Now you can flavor your yogurt to your desired taste by adding your OWN health benefit sweeteners such as honey and agave nectar and fresh or frozen fruit.
cinnamon, Watkins vanilla, honey from Matt's beehives, and black berries
Until next time...
look good, feel good, do good