A special educator by profession. When not busy teaching and mentoring student teachers, Susin likes to experiment with DIY eco-projects.
Do you have that tub of leftover yogurt that you think you may not be able to finish by its expiry date? What about that half-finished carton of milk?
Many of us have forgotten leftovers in the refrigerator, and a tub of yogurt—especially that good-old-but-plain yogurt, is often one of these foods, waiting to be tossed, half-used when we next visit it to find that it is past its usable date. Another possible forgotten food might be that carton of plain milk.
To embark and maintain sustainable eating healthy habits, why not turn these into another a delicious batch of fresh, homemade yogurt?
Step 1: Gather Your Materials
Firstly, to make homemade yogurt from yogurt, choose the good old plain ones for better results. Full-fat regular yogurt will yield more creamy yogurt, while low-fat yogurt will be slightly runnier.
- Plain yogurt, full-fat or low-fat
- Milk, full-cream preferred, new or old, within usable date
- Mason jars (or other jars that are heatproof)
- 1 pot with lid large enough to hold the jar(s) while boiling
- Cooler bag
- 1 towel to wrap the jar
- 1 extra jar to hold warm water
Step 2: Cook the Milk
- Pour milk about 3/4 full into an approximately 550ml jar.
- Put the jar into the pot. (You may want to make multiple jars of yogurt and that is fine, as long as they fit into the pot).
- Fill the pot with water till it reaches a level of about 3/4 way up the side of the jar.
- Optional step: Place a dish rag at the bottom of the pot to prevent the jar from jiggling and making noises when the water is boiling.
- Place the pot on the stove and bring the water to boil. Let it simmer till the milk is almost going to boil, or when a layer of "skin" develops on the surface of the milk.
Step 3: Cool and Add Yogurt
- Remove the jar(s) from the pot with care and allow the milk to cool down. You can loosely place the lid over the jar with a slight opening to prevent dust from getting into it.
- Let it sit for about 20 to 30 minutes, checking on it periodically and stirring the milk gently to even out the temperature. Feel the outside of the jar—you will want the milk to feel warm, however not too hot to be touched.
- Once the jar is comfortably warm to be touched, gently stir in 2 tablespoons of your yogurt and cap it.
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Step 4: Incubate
- The yogurt needs to be warm while it incubates. One easy option is to wrap the jar tightly with a cloth and keep it in a cooler bag together with another jar or jars of warm water. The extra jar of water can be replenished when it cools during the process. Keep the cooler bag in an "exclusive spot" that gives it no chance of being moved or knocked into.
- Let the yogurt incubate for a minimum of 8 to 12 hours. You can start making it in the morning and just take the yogurt out of the cooler bag to keep in the refrigerator before you go to bed, and the next morning you could enjoy your jar of goodness. You can also leave it to incubate longer, but the longer the incubation period, the tangier it will be.
Step 5: Enjoy!
There are limitless ways to enjoy your very own homemade yogurt.
- Eat it plain, sweetened with honey, and/or fruits.
- Serve it as an appetizer or an after-meal dessert.
- Use it in salad dressings and dips
- Use it as a thickener in other recipes
Let us grow more food from old food!
© 2021 Susin Lim