Friday, February 6, 2009

Homemade Yogurt, with Stevia

We make our own yogurt, for a variety of reasons, and after trying a LOT of recipes and combining all the great qualities they each offered, this is what I came up with:

Vanilla Yogurt with Stevia

  • 6 cups of milk (we use an organic straight from the farm milk)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of pure stevia extract powder (I use Nirvana)
  • 2 T honey or maple syrup
  • 1-2 Tablespoons Vanilla Extract (read the label, some have sugar in them)
  • 3/4 cup instant powdered milk (we use whole milk)
  • 1/2 c yogurt (plain, unsweetened)

You will also need:

Mix the milk, stevia, & vanilla together in a large pan. Turn the stove to medium and stir occasionally until your milk mixture reaches sterilising on your thermometer (90-95 C).

In the meantime boil 2 liters (or just under) of water. Yes, that's my kettle, and yes it's electric, I'm in Australia, what did you expect? When the water is done boiling pour it, CAREFULLY, into your 2 liter thermos. Securely place the top(s) on the thermos and set it aside for now.

When the mixture reaches the sterilizing temperature, pour it into a large measuring cup or bowl to pour the mixture into. Stick the mixture in the fridge or freezer to cool. Even still it takes anywhere from 30-40 minutes to cool this down. You want it to reach the Baby's Bath mark on my thermometer! Okay, so yours doesn't say that? You're aiming for 40 c.

Once the temperature has dropped, mix in the yogurt. I drop the yogurt in (gently so it doesn't slosh) and I stir it with a spoon for a minute. Let it rest, then do it again to break up any remaining lumps.

Drain the water from your thermos. (I just dump it in the sink, but be careful it doesn't splash on you!) Pour the yogurt mixture into your thermos, securely place the lids on and set the thermos someplace warm, but not hot. It's summery here so I put mine out on one of our decks in the sun. In the winter I find a warm patch of sun in the house or place it near a heater. Leave the yogurt for 7-8 hours.

I can usually tell my yogurt is done when I lift the container and it's far heavier then when I started out. However, after the 7-8 hours you should be able to open the thermos and see thick set yogurt inside. Mine also tends to be a little "bubbly" on top, but it's usually good and thick under that.

I have a small ice cream bucket that I dump my yogurt in, and that's what it looks like when it's done. The yellow is the whey, and not yellow except in that picture! I put it in the fridge, usually over night. I tend to start my yogurt in the morning and by dinner time I pop it in the fridge.

Then we eat it up with fresh fruit, jam, berry sauce, or anything else that pleases us on it. My kids are oddly prone to asking for the ends of bread so they can dunk them in their yogurt to eat. They think that's the best. The bowl above is topped with fruit salad (mostly watermelon) and was my 5 year olds attempt at a smiley face with hair!

1 comment:

Andrea said...

YUM! Thanks for reminding me- I have some starter in the fridge- I need to make some yogurt today.