So along with making bread from scratch every few days, I’ve also decided to make my own yogurt. It’s been something I’ve been meaning to do for a few years now and about a month ago I finally got off my butt and did it.
I eat a lot of yogurt. A LOT of yogurt. I eat it to get my calcium allotment and I eat it for my digestive health. I also eat it because I love it. I like it plain, with fruit, with crazy flavours, on granola, in smoothies. It’s my go-to morning breakfast food. And I spend a ton of money on it.
So I was reading the Cheap Healthy Good blog and came across a post (or a link…I can’t remember now) about making your own yogurt in a crock pot. In any event, I printed off the instructions, bought some organic whole milk (holy CRAP is that stuff expensive!!!) and had at’er. The end product was ok as the DH would say. It was yogurt but definitely on the thin, runny side. It was also a little on the yeasty tasting side which was odd. I added some fruit jam and managed to choke it down. And went back to the drawing board.
I stumbled across this recipe and have stuck with it ever since. It is a little, well ok a lot, more labour intensive than the crock pot method. But some of that is partially my fault as I stand there and stir the milk to cool it down. If I walked away and let it alone I’m sure I’d get more accomplished. But, it’s worth it. The yogurt is thick and tangy and tastes just like Liberty yogurt, which to me, is the gold standard.
I don’t use organic milk anymore either. It’s expensive at $8.99 for a 4L bag and I didn’t find that the initial batch of yogurt tasted all that great. In fact, it tasted kind of crappy. In Canada, dairy farmers aren’t allowed to use growth hormones and use antibiotics under strict conditions so I figure that regular milk is probably fine.
So yogurt and bread are now made at home by me. I’m not sure if I’m saving money on the yogurt, although I’m sure I’m at least breaking even, given that I’m not spending $10 or so every two weeks, but it tastes awesome and that’s reason enough to do it. And now that I have a recipe that works I’ll forgo the freeze-dried starter and just use a bit of yogurt from the last batch to “season” the new batch.
DH rolls his eyes at all this but let me tell you, when the Rapture/G20 riots/2012/end of the world comes, at least we’ll have food to eat.