When we were growing up we had a yoghurt maker – it looked a bit like a space-ship, with a circular heated base and a domed glass top. Inside were 6 small curvy glass jars with yellow lids – altogether a rather pleasing design and I wish it had not been lost over the years. It was fun to use and we made our own delicious yoghurt all the time, which was useful given that it was harder to get plain, unsweetened yoghurt in the shops then.
In a spirit of nostalgia, I thought I’d have a go at making my own yoghurt again, and found this very useful article by Phil Daoust in the Guardian. I really like goats’ yoghurt, so followed his method using goats’ milk and the excellent yoghurt made by St Helen’s Farm.
You need a thermometer, a wide-mouthed thermos and some jars for the finished yoghurt.
500ml goats’ milk
3tbsp live goats’ yoghurt
Fill your thermos with hot water. Heat milk to 85ºC, stirring occasionally, then leave to cool to 46ºC and whisk or stir in the yoghurt. Drain the thermos and pour in the mixture. Seal and leave for at least 8 hours. Pour it into clean jars and store in the fridge. Phil Daoust recommends adding 25g powdered milk to every 500ml of milk, which makes a creamier yoghurt, but I haven’t tried this, as Waitrose does not yet run to powdered goats’ milk!
My first effort was quite runny and mild, so I think next time I might leave it a bit longer, to see if I can produce something a bit closer to the original yoghurt (don’t think St Helen’s Farm have anything to worry about at the moment). There is something very satisfying about doing this – rather in the same way that making bread is satisfying.