I use a lunchbox-sized cooler to make 2 quarts of yogurt at a time. Read on to see how it's done!
For two quarts you'll need:
Milk, just shy of 2 quarts
The Nourishing Home recommends 1 T Unflavored Gelatin (I used 1 packet, which is a little less)
1/2 c Yogurt (homemade is fine or store bought)
Step 1: Heat your milk. Pour the milk into the pot, affix your thermometer, and turn on the burner to low or medium low. You want to heat your milk relatively slowly to 180º-185º. Once your milk reaches 180º take it off the burner and set it somewhere to cool. It will often go up a little more after being pulled off the burner, which is fine. Be careful not to overheat the milk too much or you'll get a cooked milk flavor or bottom of the pot skin, neither of which are fun.
Thank you again to The Nourishing Home for this and all your other great recipes!
|Food Stuff You'll Need|
You'll also need a small cooler (the smaller the better as long as your quart jars fit), 2 quart jars with lids and rings, towels to wrap the cooler, a pot to warm the milk, a thermometer, measuring cups, a spoon, etc.
|Some Non-food Stuff You'll Need|
Step 2: While your milk is starting to cool pour the hottest tap water you can get into your quarts and cooler. This will help reduce heat loss when it comes time to fill your jars with yogurt and refill your cooler with more hot water. Now go find something else to do for a little while. You have some time before your milk is cool.
Step 3: Once your milk reaches around 115º or 110º you add your yogurt. The ideal temperature is 110º but you'll lose some heat adding your yogurt. I pour some hot milk into whatever container I have the yogurt in and thin the yogurt out a bit before pouring it into the main batch, like tempering eggs for a custard. At the same time you want to whisk in your gelatin until fully dissolved. I used 1 packet for my batch but I might try two next time as it wasn't quite as thick as I would have liked.
Step 4: Pour the water out of your cooler and jars. Pour your still very liquid yogurt into the jars without the lids/rings on. Then very carefully place the jars into the cooler. Pour fresh hot tap water in around the jars, making sure not to pour water into your yogurt. Close the cooler's lid. Cover the cooler in the towels to help hold in more heat and go about your day. You'll want to pull out your yogurt some time between 7 and 12 hours later. The longer it brews? cooks? cultures? the tangier it will be. The flavor also depends heavily on the yogurt you use to start the batch, so choose wisely. It's worth buying a little cup of really good organic (plain) yogurt to use as your starter.
Step 5: When you think your yogurt's done carefully open the lid of the cooler and take a taste. The flavor of anything warm is stronger than when it's cold, so keep this in mind when you try your yogurt. Use a clean spoon to take a sample. Even the tiniest bit of saliva will start to break down the yogurt. If it tastes good to you pop the lids on and put those babies in the fridge!
Like I mentioned earlier, I would have been a little happier with even stiffer yogurt. Next time I'll try 2 packets or maybe 1½. I haven't decided yet. The texture of this yogurt was perfect for me but I'm looking for something my darling daughter doesn't find quite so easy to paint with. It's probably a hopeless cause.
|Spooned out with a nice texture.|
|Got a little soupy after stirring in the jam.|