What’s with the yogurt?

Here is a question from a cruiser and one that I have had long discussions about:

I was looking for an easy way to make yogurt without having to buy a ‘yogurt maker’. I found several suggestions on the internet, including using a heating pad, or a slow cooker (e.g., turn on low for 10 minutes every hour), etc., but they just seemed complicated. The one most appealing was to simply pour the heated milk and yogurt culture into a pre-warmed wide mouth thermos and let it sit for 6-8 hours. This works GREAT! The hardest part for me was finding a wide mouth thermos that held at least 4 cups. (I didn’t have any wide mouth at all and wanted this size instead of the more common 16 oz. versions.)
I found several descriptions on the internet for making the yogurt but they are all pretty much the same. Heat the milk to just below boiling (a thermometer really helps) and keep it there for 5-10 minutes, stirring constantly. Then let it cool down to ‘warm’ (I use 110 degrees). Then mix a few tablespoons of yogurt with active cultures with a cup of the warm milk and mix well. Then pour this back into the larger portion of the warm milk and then pour into the thermos.
Next, I’m going to be trying some of the dry yogurt culture just in case we run out and can’t find any active yogurts wherever we travel.

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About sailingmoms

Spent the last 5 years of our lives floating around the globe. Amazing how much we have seen, experienced and lived through. Sharing the experience and knowledge with others out there or planning on making the jump.
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5 Responses to What’s with the yogurt?

  1. Tuula says:

    I’ve done this without the thermos, when I didn’t have one. Just used a thick wide mouth pre-warmed glass jar, which I wrapped inside a big towel to keep it warm longer. Don’t recommend using the glass jars in the boat, though;-)

  2. sailingmoms says:

    I also used a old glass jar to make my yogurt. I didn’t think about warming the glass but warmed the milk instead. It’s a great idea. Thanks for the tip. I left mine out for a few hours (6 to 8) till it set. Also, I tried not to make yogurt during a rough passage as it wouldn’t set nice and smooth.

  3. Tuula says:

    Let us know how the dry yogurt culture worked.

  4. Toast says:

    On a boat, a good place to stick the jar is just under the dodger in the cockpit. Out of the wind and nice and warm. I covered this a bit in an article on cooking with the sun awhile ago. As for dry yogurt cultures, they work extremely well. My girls are particularly fond of the flavored ones as a special treat comparable to the excitement elicited by ice cream. Heh 😉

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