Most of the yogurt sold in stores comes in a variety of flavors and is loaded with sugars and preservatives. On your next shopping trip, take a look at the long list of ingredients on a yogurt cup. Making your own yogurt from scratch is incredibly easy.No store-bought yogurt can compare to the creamy taste of homemade yogurt. All you need is a heavy pot, milk and a small amount of store-bought plain yogurt. Make sure the label shows it having “live and active yogurt culture”. It’s the live and active yogurt culture that goes to work in the warm milk to transform it into yogurt. You will only need to buy a 5.6-6 ounce cup of plain yogurt the first time you want to make yogurt. After that you will use a starter from the batch of yogurt you had just made.
I learned how to make yogurt from my mother who has always made her own yogurt as long as I can remember. Like her, I make my own because I want to be in control of what goes into the yogurt I eat. Most of the time, I like my yogurt plain. I also make Tzatziki (a Greek sauce) with crushed garlic, sliced cucumbers, a pinch of dried mint leaves crumbled into homemade yogurt to serve with grilled meats. You can also strain the yogurt in a cheese cloth (removing the whey) to make Greek yogurt. I especially love Greek yogurt with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a dash of Za’atar (Middle Eastern spice mixture) on a pita bread.
For a healthy and delicious breakfast idea, you can add any combination of fruits and for that extra crunch, add toasted old fashion oats or almonds, a dash of cinnamon and maybe a drizzle of honey or maple syrup. You can even use homemade yogurt to make a delicious smoothie. The possibilities are endless.
It is economical and well worth it to make your own yogurt free of the additives and preservatives found in store-bought yogurt.
- ½ gallon whole milk
- ⅔ cup homemade yogurt or store-bought plain yogurt, room temperature
- In a heavy pot, over medium heat, bring the milk to boil (200°F). Be sure not to over boil and scorch the milk.
- Allow the milk to reach lukewarm temperature about (115°F).
- In a small bowl, mix the yogurt with lukewarm milk.
- Add the yogurt and milk mixture to the lukewarm milk and stir gently.
- Replace the lid over the pot, wrap the pot with a large thick towel and leave it undisturbed in a warm place for 6-8 hours.