Sunday, August 15, 2010


I'm a daily consumer of yogurt.  I have been for some time.  It cracked me up the other day standing in the grocery aisle.  A man and woman were shopping.  She wanted to by one of those yogurt products in individual serving cups that are advertised to regulate your digestive system.  He was saying that it was too expensive.  First, how much is your digestive system worth? and Second, why buy that kind?  I couldn't help myself.  I piped up and told them that Mountain High yogurt was much less expensive per serving, very tasty, completly natural and had, in my personal experience the same effect.  They both looked at me as if I was talking Spanish, smiled and nodded.

I've made previous attempts at making my own yogurt.

It wasn't until our recent flood / forced remodel that my attempts became more practical.  Making yogurt requires an incubator.  I'm not an expert at this yet, but it seems that you need to be able to hold the yogurt at about 110 degrees for 5 hours or so to grow that bacteria culture.  While there are countertop yogurt makers that you just plug in, I don't own one.  My attempts to incubate in my previous stove were failures.  Using the heating pad took time and effort that I wanted to spend on other things.

But my lovely new stove can do anything.  Under dehydrator setting, you can select 110 degrees.  I set the timer and walk away.  Now I can make a batch easily each week.  I'm experimenting a bit with adding a little local honey, but here is my basic procedure.
  • 4 cup milk in a good pan on the stove top brought to 200 degrees, stirring gently.  I put my candy thermometer in the pan so that I can see the termperature.  
  • Hold temp for 10 minutes.  Continue stirring.  I set a timer here and do this fairly precisely.
  • During the 10 minutes, prepare a large boil of ice water. 
  • At the end of 10 minutes, put the pan in ice water.
  • Remove from ice water when the mixutre is 125 degrees.  Add 1/3 cup powdered milk and stir to incorporate.
  • Remove 1 cup of milk and temper with 1/4 cup of starter (see below.) 
  • Pour into a hot clean container, cover and place in incubator @ 110 degrees for 4 - 5 hours.  Refrigerate immediately.

For the starter, use 1/4 cup of good organic yogurt.  Make sure the ingredient list contains only milk and/or cream.  My favorite brand also contains pectin to make it smoother, which I guess is okay.

But here is the good thing.  You can use the last 1/4 c. of your last batch of Yogurt for the starter for this batch.   That is exactly what I've been doing for the last few weeks.  Isn't that just perfect?


  1. We eat lots of yogurt, too - as do most people in Europe.... Our 'yogurt aisle' in the supermarkets is one entire, long aisle, both sides... and pretty inexpensive. I haven't tried making it since I lived in the US - but this seems pretty simple....
    I also use it in cooking - for salad dressings, and in place of buttermilk, which I can only rarely find.

  2. I don't have a fancy stove (but I wish I did) so I use a rubbermaid cooler filled with hot water as a thermal regulator. It doesn't stay 110 the whole time, but it stays warm long enough for the bacteria to do their thing.

  3. I make yogurt in my crock pot, thanks to this post: Crockpot Yogurt Recipe

  4. I love making my own yogurt so thank you so much for sharing this. However, lol, I'm way interested in your stove! What kind of stove do you have that dehydrates that low? I am so excited to hear about this ;) Thanks so much for linking up to Simple Lives Thursday.

  5. Oh by the way, please link to either one of the 4 hosting blogs so that others can share in the fun as well :D

  6. Raven, I never thought of the crock pot for yogurt. Don't know why. It sounds like that would work perfectly. Diane, we recently had a major insurance claim on damage to our house. Because we own a construction company, we general contracted the work ourselve. It yeilded some cash that I used to upgrade. This oven has all sorts of fancy things. There is slow cook setting, dehydrator, bread proofing, other things I haven't even tried yet.