Homemade yogurt, take 3

My last homemade yogurt was a happy success, and it made me really look forward to making another batch. And after 10 days and a lucky deal on milk at the grocery store, that time had come.

Process notes

  • used 1/2 gallon whole milk (as before) in a Dutch oven rubbed with an ice cube
  • heated to 188°, which was a little warm, and once it reached 188° I turned off the heat and let it sit for 5 minutes (it held this high temp the whole resting period)
  • cooled for about an hour to 115° (went and showered and got ready for the day while it cooled, rather than stirring it)
  • lightly stirred in 2 tbsp of the leftover yogurt — I was originally going to use the sample I had put in the freezer last time, but the consistency was weird (chunky and runny) so I played it safe and used what was in the refrigerator instead
  • original yogurt was from Feb. 11, this batch was made Feb. 21
  • heated oven to 110° then turned off
  • placed covered pot in oven — did not need to turn on the proofing function because there was plenty of warmth from the preheat and the cast iron pot, but I did leave the light on the entire time
  • let sit in the oven for 7 hrs

Results

After sitting for 7 hours, I checked the yogurt and the texture was a little different from last time. I think it was too warm, or the incubation time was too long. It wasn’t as smooth, and it almost had a curdled quality to it.

But it tasted fine, so I filled a 1-qt jar with the yogurt, and for the other half strained it in a paper-towel-lined strainer. Both went into the refrigerator, and a couple of hours later the strained portion had produced really thick, creamy Greek style yogurt. This part smoothed out nicely after vigorous stirring, and left me with a scant pint of thick yogurt + a pint of whey. The regular yogurt is on the thinner side, but that’s not unexpected since it wasn’t strained at all.

The yogurt is tasting great! And the whey is going to come in handy for a birthday cake (buttermilk layer cake with chocolate frosting) and a loaf of buttermilk bread from my favorite whole grain bread book.

HOMEMADE YOGURT POSTS

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