Homemade Fresh Yogurt
Making homemade yogurt, kefir and other fresh, cultured foods is both fun and easy. With just a little bit of time and effort, you can make delicious yogurt. By doing so, you get to enjoy a premium cultured, raw dairy product that is loaded with beneficial bacteria known as probiotics, enzymes, and quality protein. Raw dairy is much easier to digest than cooked, pasteurized dairy; they are like night and day. Please note: if you have been allergic to dairy products, you may be able to enjoy homemade raw milk yogurt, even though you cannot digest ordinary dairy products. Homemade yogurt is a superior option to even organic yogurt, because commercial yogurt is made from pasteurized, and likely homogenized, milk.
It is especially important to find new foods to enjoy when you are candida cleansing, as your food selections are restricted while your requirements for high quality, nutrient-dense foods are increased.
Please note: cleanliness is essential when culturing foods, as you want to be growing the right culture. Clean your kitchen or workspace from top to bottom before you make yogurt, kefir, or any cultured or fermented food.
- 2 or more quarts of fresh organic, preferably raw, cow or goat milk
- 2 or more wide-mouth quart glass jars, sterilized, with tight-fitting lids
- 3 T per quart jar of organic, whole milk, plain, unsweetened yogurt to use as your yogurt starter
- 1 heating pad, found at the back of your linen closet, thrift or drug store
- Clean enamel, glass or stainless steel pot
- Clean spoon
- Clean dishtowelsDirections for 1 quart of goat or cow milk
Pour milk into pan, turn heat to medium, and testing every couple of minutes with the thermometer, heat to 115 degrees F. While milk is heating, lay out the heating pad, cover with a clean towel, and line up your jars. Place 3 T of plain yogurt into each clean, empty quart jar. When milk reaches 115 degrees F, slowly pour ½ C of milk into each jar. Stir each jar until the milk and yogurt are smooth. Once combined, pour milk into each jar until full, stir well, and cover with a clean lid. Place the jars on the heating pad set to low, cover all the jars with a clean towel, wrapping with 2-3 extra towels if you have a cold, drafty kitchen, and leave to culture for the next 15-18 hours. In the warm summer months, yogurt can culture in 12-15 hours. Times are approximate.
Freshly-made yogurt has a shelf life of at least 3 weeks, so make as much as you think you can eat during this time frame.
Signs of over- or under-culturing:
Over-culturing: Streaks or lines in the yogurt will start to appear along the sides of the jar. Immediately refrigerate, which will stop the culture from continuing to grow. Next time, remove from heating pad sooner.
Under-culturing: The consistency is that of thick milk rather than nice, thick yogurt. Let it culture for up to 24 hours to achieve results.