This is so simple and it’s been consistently good! We go through a lot of yogurt in our house. I was buying it for $3.39 per 32 oz (organic, whole milk yogurt). It now costs about $1.50 per 32 oz and it is the exact same thing–taste, texture and all. Let’s get started, shall we?
Here’s what you need to get set up:
Set a pot of water to boil--I'm using my double boiler.
Pull together your thermometer, spoon for stirring milk, whisk for later and 3T of yogurt (I use whole milk, organic). For the first batch of yogurt, use store bought yogurt as a starter. Then, once you've made your first batch, use it to start your next. Make sense?
Now place your double boiler over the water and fill with 1/2 gallon of milk (I use whole, organic).
And fill your sink with a couple inches of cold water. This is to cool the milk down quickly.
Once the water is boiling below, pull the milk off and quickly sterilize the spoon, whisk and probe of the thermometer. (Not pictured) I use metal tongs to pull these out! Place the milk back on the water.
Last step of prep-lay a heating pad, set to medium temp, on the counter. Cover it with 2 clean dish towels. Now we're ready to make yogurt!
So far this has been quick prep! And it only gets easier from here...check your milk, stir occasionally, until the temp is between 180-200 degrees. I pulled mine off at 182 degrees.
Now that the milk has reached between 180-200 degrees, remove the milk from the double boiler and set in the sink of cold water. Stir occasionally. We're waiting for it to drop between 110-115 degrees.
The milk reached 112 degrees in a matter of minutes. I pulled it out of the water and placed it on the heating pad, on top one of the towels.
Remove the thermometer and add the 3T of yogurt. Stir well.
Cover the milk with a lid, then wrap the second towel around the pot. Do not disturb for the next 7 hours exactly.
I mean exactly 7 hours! I like to write down the time to be sure...start when it's covered with the towel and go 7 hours from there. You can experiment later with this incubation-more time for tangier, thicker yogurt, less time for milder, thinner yogurt. 7 hours makes your yogurt similar in taste and consistency to Stoneyfield organic, whole milk yogurt--the brand I used to buy.
It's been 7 hours! Did I mention 7 hours was exact? Good. Remove the towel and lid and whisk the yogurt until it's smooth. Pour into your container of choice with a lid. Place the yogurt (still thin-ish at this point) in the back of your fridge. Leave it there over night. This is important to stop the incubation of the yogurt cultures. Otherwise it'd continue to get tangier and thicker. The next morning, homemade yogurt will be ready to consume! This keeps for 2-3 weeks, tho we never reach that point before eating every drop (well save 3T of this batch for your next batch!).