You Should Know How To Do This: Yogurt

I love yogurt enough that the cost of procuring this particular delicacy is a major consideration of my budget. A couple of years ago, my friend told me you could just…make this at your house. Here’s what you need: milk and extant active-culture yogurt. Warning: these how-to photos are going to be exceptionally boring.

I’m not trying to tell you how to live your life, but it’s my strong recommendation that you use whole milk and full-fat Greek yogurt. YOLO, am I right? After the jump, I’ll tell you how to do this cool biology experiment that you can eat.

Pour milk into a big ole pot and turn up the burner to approximately medium.

Like I said, this is going to be so boring.
Like I said, this is going to be so boring.

So yeah, bring it up to about 180 degrees, stirring more or less constantly so that the bottom doesn’t scorch. If you have a thermometer, it’s way easier, but it’s going to be roughly the time you start having a significant number of bubbles at the edges and a noteworthy amount of steam coming off the milk. The amazing warm milk smell is just a nice side effect. When you get to 180ish, pull it off the heat and put it into the vessel you want to use as a little yogurt crock. I like a gladware container or a tight-lidded ceramic container, but some people are into an Igloo or something like that. You just need it to be kept warm.

While you’re waiting for this to cool, look around your place for somewhere to keep this crock warm. I put mine in the oven overnight, but once I put it under a vent, kind of? That worked well. Another time, I swaddled it up and put it on top of my heater, which was on very, very low. If there isn’t anywhere too warm in your house, it’s cool. Your yogurt might take a little longer to set up, but nothing bad happens.

When your milk mixture has come down to 110-120 (a.k.a. “I can put my finger into this bowl for up to five seconds with no horrid discomfort” temperature), start to temper the yogurt you laid aside. For every pint of milk, you need a tablespoon of active-culture yogurt. Since I go hard in the paint, I needed 4 tablespoons of the hard stuff.

Tempering is NOT a joke, okay? It isn't.
Tempering is NOT a joke, okay? It isn’t.

Blend until smooth and of uniform temperature, then pour it into the rest of the milk. Mix it around for good measure, cover with plastic wrap, and put your vessel in the “keep warm” place you scouted out a few minutes ago. Just don’t touch it for awhile.

Here’s where your personal preferences come into play. Do you like a sweet yogurt? A tart one? It’s going to take at least four or five hours to get to the sweet part, and closer to seven or eight to get to tart. Either way, you’re going to be really excited about eating this ish.

Reminder: save a couple tablespoons of this so you can repeat this process in a few days/weeks/hours.

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