Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Well, I'm ahead of the game this week.  My soap challenge soap is made, cut, and looking good!  Pictures to come on Saturday.

Anyway, I made this particular batch with yogurt.  If you like the qualities that yogurt gives to soap, you soapmakers can add a bit of wow to your next batch by making your very own yogurt.  (I'm all about the DIY projects!)

It is Super Easy, too!  For years I've used my $1 garage sale yogurt maker but it breathed its last a couple of months ago.  (It had lived a good long life....I saw the same yogurt maker on an episode of the Bob Newhart Show, so that puts it at about 40 years old in people years--I don't know the equivalent in electric kitchen gizmo years....)  OK, no more relying on a gadget, I had to learn how to do it myself.  Have you ever searched "making homemade yogurt" on the internet?  There are 2,260,000 results on Google and I would reckon that every one is different.  So that means that it's not as painfully precise as some might have you think.  Here is my way--two ingredients and a few minutes of hands-on work.

Heat the amount of milk you want in a saucepan to 185 degrees F.  (My batch size is 3 cups.)

Hold the saucepan in another pan of ice water so that it cools to 110 degrees F.  It only takes a few minutes.
Now it's time to add the yogurt starter--plain, unsweetened yogurt.  The recommended amount varies, but it's roughly 2-3 teaspoons per quart of milk.  (More will not make it set more quickly, just make it more tart, I've read.)  I use a "spoonful"; I'm not sure of the exact amount and I haven't bombed it yet.

Stir the yogurt in and pour it into a thermos.  My thermos hold three cups (hence the size of my batch).  I pre-warm it by filling it with hot water for a few minutes then replacing it with the yogurt.  Screw the lid on and that's it!  No need to fiddle with thermometers or wrap it in blankets to insulate it.

Once again, the length of time it needed to create yogurt varies.  I usually wait 10 or so hours, sometimes overnight, or whenever I remember it. 

Then I pour it into a glass jar and refrigerate it.  It will be thicker after it's chilled.  It's not usually as thick as store bought yogurt, but sometimes it surprises me.  Some yogurt makers add gelatin and/or powdered milk, but that's just adding more steps and more stuff to buy.  I like simplicity!!

And then, of course, if there is any left after making your super-duper yogurt soap, you can eat it. (!)  It's great in a smoothie.  Or mixed with homemade raspberry sauce.  Or as the liquid in a batch of muffins.  Or mixed with granola.  Or....



A link to this post can also be found at the amazingly informative site Too Many Jars in my Kitchen.

6 comments:

  1. Sounds great. I love yogurt. Must try for myself. Thanks for such an in-depth info :)

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  2. thank you for sharing! it doesn't seem so difficult to do after seeing your process. I like simplicity too! :)

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  3. Looks very yummy and creamy! Thanks for posting this!

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  4. Thank you for sharing. I have wanted to use yogurt in my soap but haven't ventured in that territory yet. I probably couldn't get the yogurt into my soap before I eat it. I love yogurt.. lol :)

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  5. I found your post on Fill Those Jars Friday. I have been making yogurt for a long time, my temperatures might be slightly different from yours and then I incubate it directly in a jar. I use my dehydrator now, but I used to wrap it in a towel and put it in my oven with just the oven light. It comes out so thick and yummy, I eat it plain. I think the secret is also really fresh milk, I use raw milk. I don't know anything about making soap though.

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