Monday, April 9, 2012

Homemade Greek Yogurt

So during the Christmas break my dad and I bought some yogurmet starter and rennet at a health foods store in Lubbock.  I had been wanting to make yogurt and cheese from my friend Katy's goat's milk.

After several failed attempts I finally gave up on Goat's Milk Yogurt. However, I did make some successful Chevre with the rennet, I even made a batch using lemon juice instead of rennet that was milder and creamier.  Anyway back to the topic at hand.

Over this past Easter weekend Sam and I went to my parents.

In January my dad bought a yogurt maker online so he has been making lots of tasty yogurt.

Since I don't have this fancy machine I decided there had to be a way to improvise.

So Saturday Dad and I gathered up a heating pad and glass dome lid from one of mom's cake stands.

Dad wanted to test this method first with water instead of wasting a batch of milk to see if it would heat to 110 degrees.  Thats the magic temperature for making yogurt set up properly.  We let two water filled 1/2 pint jars set in the homemade yogurt machine for several hours and then used a candy thermometer to test the temperature.  We had the heating pad set on low and the water was around 104 degrees.

Since the water was heated I figured the milk would get warm enough to make yogurt so I went ahead and mixed a 1/4 cup of greek style plain yogurt in 1 quart of whole milk.

At this point in the afternoon Dad and Sam had gone to the "fishing hole" to do a little male bonding and fishing.  Supposedly they caught fish, I only believe them because they took pictures to prove it.

Anyway I poured the milk/yogurt mixture into several small jars and set them under the dome and went ahead and turned the heating pad up to high.  One of those Texas mentality things "everything's bigger" so why not go ahead and turn it up as high as it will go.

Dad has been experimenting with how long to leave the yogurt in the machine.  Standard time is 12 hours but through his trails he found that the longer you leave them in the thicker the yogurt becomes.  So we left this batch in for 18 hours.

It turned out really mild flavored with a great smooth and creamy texture.

Dad makes fruit smoothies and mom uses it in place of mayo.  There are lots of great healthy recipes to use yogurt in as an alternative.   When your making it yourself all you need is milk and at least 1/4 of a cup of your most recent batch of yogurt.  

We ran out of cream cheese making jalapeno poppers Sunday afternoon so I mixed some of this homemade yogurt and feta cheese with crumbled bacon and stuffed into the peppers.  They were pretty delicious if you ask me.

Hope everyone had a great Easter! Yeah for SPRING!


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