Homemade Yogurt

I'm interested in making yogurt myself but don't want to buy one of those yogurt makers. Has anyone had success with those recipes that have you make it in a slow cooker? Also, I want my yogurt to have as little tang as possible - I've heard you can control that by doing certain things while you make it. If I want to keep my yogurt from being overly tangy, what are the best steps to take? Thanks!



WannabeBaker June 28, 2012
Thanks guys! I've never made yogurt and don't know if it will become a regular thing, so I'd prefer not to buy any equipment right now. If I do, I'll be sure to keep those items in mind.
petitbleu June 28, 2012
Oh, I forgot something else. In theory yogurt gets tangier the longer you let it sit at room temperature. As you make yogurt, start checking its consistency after 4 hours. You may find that it has already thickened adequately, and after that point it will only get more sour.
To encourage thick yogurt with less tang, you can try a couple steps. When you heat the milk to 180 initially, keep it at 180 for 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Then, bring the milk down to 118 and culture as usual.
Also try adding some milk powder to the milk while heating. These steps will yield a thicker yogurt in a shorter time frame, and in theory this will result in a less tangy yogurt.
petitbleu June 28, 2012
I use something called a yogotherm ( http://www.cheesemaking.com/store/p/100-Yogotherm-Yogurt-Maker-2-QT.html ). It uses no electricity and has worked every time. Worth the reasonable price as I make yogurt a lot. I also culture my yogurt using a powdered culture. Many yogurt enthusiasts will probably disagree with me on this, but I don't like using previous batches of yogurt to culture current batches. I find the results to be inconsistent, and since I make half a gallon of yogurt at a time, a failed batch is a lot of wasted milk.
You can also control the tanginess by using powdered cultures. There are specific yogurt cultures that promote sweet as opposed to tangy yogurt ( http://www.cheesemaking.com/store/p/163-Yogurt-DS-sweet-5-packets.html ), and you can control the final product this way.
Raquelita June 28, 2012
I use an insulated shopping bag (a cooler/chest works great, too) and stuff it with kitchen towels. This holds temperature remarkably well! I have only used my dehydrator to control the temperature one time, though you can do that. I like the insulated bag because i can make a tall liter-size container in it. I don't have my own picture, but a google search for "insulated basket yogurt incubation" will give you a ton of ideas like this: http://www.familyhealthnaturally.com/2011_07_01_archive.html.
boulangere June 28, 2012
I use a Yogourmet maker. I've never used a slow cooker to make it, but it sounds like a good idea.
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