How to Make Yogurt

A simple dish that is yummilicious, comes in all colors and flavors, eases your mind over the amount of calories and serves as a perfect dessert. Tough call, don’t you think? Yogurt, however, fits the demanding bill and has an international fan following. And the demand for yogurt makers is uphill, given that they are known to enhance the nutritional value of yogurt and expedite the process of making the same.

Anyone who has observed yogurt under the microscope will tell you that it is teeming with life. Certain strains of bacteria are beneficial for humans, and Lactobacillus delbrueckii, Streptococcus salivarius, Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus casei are among the probiotic organisms that are found in yogurt.

Going by yogurt maker reviews, these yogurt machines are quite user friendly and time-saving. The latter being the single most important quality that every one seeks in any machine. Before this, I had to wrap my jars of yogurt in a blanket and placed them near the radiator for 8 hours straight. For beginners who have just woken up to the benefits of using a yogurt maker, here’s is a simple guide to using the machine for making yogurt.

1) Milk and the starter are the most important ingredients used in making yogurt using yogurt makers. Depending upon your preferences, pick up either low-fat or full-cream milk that is fresh. Heat the milk to its boiling point, and then allow it to come down to the room temperature.
2) Allow it to cool down sufficiently before adding plain yogurt to it, as the beneficial bacteria that makes the yogurt probiotic will be killed by heat as they are not thermophilic. While you wait for you milk to cool, set your yogurt maker to heat up. Ensure that the temperature does not rise above 180 F.
3) After it’s cooled, add the plain yogurt. This added yogurt is known as the starter. The bacteria in this yogurt start multiplying, and it is the chemicals that they ooze that turn milk into curd.
4) When the yogurt maker is warm, pour the milk-and-starter mixture into the machine, after stirring the mix carefully. Stirring the combination either too much or too little will result in the machine not yielding yogurt of satisfactory quality.
5) Then comes the test of patience. It usually takes an average of 8 to 10 hours for a yogurt maker to make yogurt. Removing the stirred milk-and-starter mixture from the maker too early will result in the formation of inconsistent yogurt. Please remember that the amount of time that the ingredients are left in the yogurt machine is directly proportional to the consistency and taste of the yogurt.
6) If you want your yogurt to be thicker, you can drain the yogurt in the draining bag. Cheesecloth works well too. After about 12 to 15 hours, you will have very thick yogurt, Greek-style yogurt.
7) To avoid the precarious positioning and messy dripping of a wet yogurt bag inside your crowded refrigerator, drain the yogurt in a wave-shaped strainer. The wave design exposes more of the yogurt, yielding thicker yogurt more quickly. Simply place the Wave in the fridge, and allow the yogurt to drain until it reached your desired thickness. Enjoy!

You may also choose to make probiotic yogurt with greater amounts of the beneficial microbes in it by adding milk powder to the milk and yogurt starter before pouring it into the machine. A yogurt maker is really convenient. Guess I won’t be purchasing frozen yogurt off the supermarket shelves for some time.

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