Homemade yogurt the easy way!

I make about a half a gallon at a time, quart and half gallon masons work very well as containers.  First I heat my raw milk to 180. Yes, this does pasteurize it. No, I don’t like killing the good qualities about my raw milk but in the end, it gives me a firmer yogurt. Heating it denatures the proteins so even if you are using store bought pasteurized milk, heat it to 180 degrees. You can make totally raw yogurt without heating it, it will give you a bit runnier yogurt, which I also make often as well. I like both for smoothies, I prefer the firmer Greek style for eating and the runnier to put into pancake batter, muffin mixes, etc.

After my milk comes up to temp. (being very careful not to let it get too hot as burnt milk will be ruined and take a good brillo pad to clean your pan, besides.), I let it cool to 95-110 degrees (either on the counter or in a bath of cool water) and I put a good size scoop (soup spoon size) or two of yogurt from another batch and stir to melt once it cools to 10, not before, you may kill the cultures. If you’re starting your yogurt from scratch, use a store bought yogurt (preferably plain unless you want residual flavors) with LIVE cultures (VERY important) or a powdered yogurt culture. Powdered cultures can be found from any online cheese making source, Hoegger Supply, etc.

While the milk is heating, I heat up a pot of water to about 115-120 degrees (On occasion I leave it go to boiling, I haven’t had any problems using boiling water). When the water is at temp., I pour it into a mason jar and stick it in my “cooler” to warm it up. Once the milk/yogurt culture mixture is ready, I put that into a half gallon mason or 2 quarts and stick it all into the cooler. I leave the jug of water in, close the lid and let ‘er rip. I’ll check it after a couple of hours to be sure it’s still at the right temp. (112-114) and just let it sit until it becomes the consistency I like (6-24 hours). If the temp. drops below 110, I add a new jug of warm/hot water in place of the other.

Once your yogurt is at the consistency you want, add ins like strawberries, peaches, etc. can be mixed in. Add honey to sweeten if you like!

Yogurt makes the BEST pancake mix! The possibilities are endless!

smoothie

Yogurt Smoothie! Ingredients: raw goat’s milk thanks to my dairy girls, raw goat’s milk yogurt (made by yours truly =), honey, flax seeds, frozen blueberries, and frozen strawberries!

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