It’s really amazing how easy it is to make fresh, healthy and delicious yoghurt at home. A process that is really personally rewarding, since you can make one of the healthiest foods around, using the simplest and purest of materials. At the same time, you revive a long forgotten provincial family tradition. The benefits are multiple:
An answer to the financial crisis, since you will reduce the cost of buying yoghurt by 3 to 5 times.
You can be sure of the ingredients used.
The taste will more than reward you. It will be the most delicious yoghurt you ever tasted.
(Produces about 1kg of yoghurt)
1 lt. full fat fresh milk
100 gr. Yoghurt (The yoghurt must be fresh, with a live culture listed in its ingredients)
- Place the milk in a pot, and warm it through, until it reaches a temperature of about 85’C, taking care not to stick to the bottom. Stir regularly. Preferably, avoid setting the heat to the maximum, but as time is valuable, it is enough to keep stirring quite often. If you don’t have an appropriate thermometer, you can tell that the milk has reached the right temperature when it steams and it becomes quite frothy when you stir it. Be careful not to boil it.
- When the milk has reached the desired temperature, take it off the heat, and leave it to cool, until it reaches a temperature of about 40 – 45’C (in any case, a bit above room temperature).
- Pour the yoghurt in the warm milk, and stir well, until it is completely dissolved.
- Cover the pot. For the next 7 hours just leave it alone, at a temperature of about 38’C. This can be very easy during a warm greek summer day, since you can just let it stand somewhere in the kitchen. The rest of the days of the year, just put it in the oven, at the warm air function at the lowest possible temperature. If the lowest possible setting of your oven is not low enough, you can leave just its lamp on. Its temperature will provide enough heat. If you are one of the lucky ones and your oven has a yoghurt making function, even better!
- In 7 hours your yoghurt will be ready. Let it cool, and enjoy it on its own, with honey, cereal, fruit, or whatever else you like. You can place it in glass jars and keep it in the fridge for about a week. If you live by yourself, and you cannot consume it all by yourself, just make less adjusting the quantities, or even better, make a nice present to your favorite friends and initiate them in this wonderful process. You will have given them a very precious and delicious gift.
- Don’t eat all of it! The yoghurt you just made can be used as a live culture to be reused next time you want to make some fresh yoghurt just adding it to fresh milk, repeating the whole process. In theory at least, you never have to buy yoghurt again!
- If you want, you can strain the yoghurt in order to make creamier, more concentrated yoghurt, resembling what is commercially known as “greek yoghurt”. Just place the yoghurt you made in muslin and let hang over a container to strain.
- By straining the yoghurt you remove precious proteins. The liquid collected drip by drip in the container is full of whey proteins, without any fat. The result will be for sure very tasty yoghurt, with a rich, creamy texture, but with less proteins, and higher fat content.
Yoghurt is an excellent calcium source for adults that have developed lactose intolerance. Its benefits are endless, digestion improvement and immune system enforcement being among the most important ones. You can read a lot more about the benefits of including yoghurt in your diet in the following links.