I know most folks aren't as lucky as I am in the free-milk arena, but free milk happens.
First, Morgan worked at a local community organization which had a surplus of free food - much of this food came to me, including gallons of milk!
Lately, my roommates have been in and out of town, leaving me with soon-to-expire milk.
My thoughts on this? 1. Excellent. 2. Yogurt! 3. Most excellent.
And the best part is, you can make yogurt too!
~ 1 quart milk*
~ 1 tbsp yogurt culture
~ tablespoon measure
~ small bottle (for hot water)
* normally I wouldn't choose low-fat milk (as pictured), but hey - use what you have.
Next, you'll want to pre-heat your jar and cooler. Fill each with very hot water and let sit while you finish up the yogurt. Pre-heating your containers keeps them from leeching valuable heat from the incubating yogurt. Since yogurt needs to stay at 100-110 degrees (F) to culture, we need all the heat retention we can get. Plus, you can use the hot water to wash your saucepan afterwards.
Heat your milk to 180 degrees F.
This step isn't technically necessary, but it results in a thicker yogurt. And since I'm using 1% milk, thicker yogurt is a very good thing. Stir frequently. There will probably be a layer of burnt milk on the saucepan afterwards, so stir frequently to reduce scorching.
At this point, there will be a thick layer of film on the milk. Skim the film off the top, since this will give your yogurt strange lumps. Edible, but strange.
Only use 1 tablespoon per quart of milk! More culture does not equal better yogurt - it equals a sour, watery yogurt. The culture needs 'Lebensraum', or 'room to live' (thanks Wild Fermentation!). Mix it thoroughly with the milk.
Seal the jar tightly and store it in your pre-heated cooler. Fill a glass bottle (or several, depending on the size of your cooler) with very hot water, and pack the hot-water bottle around your jar of milk. This will help the temperature stay around 100-110 degrees throughout the incubation process.
Check the yogurt for done-ness! It may be too thin or too mild - if so, then re-fill the hot water bottle and let it keep culturing. If it is thick and tastes good, then you're done. Hooray!
I made an entirely free breakfast:
~ homemade yogurt from gifted milk
~ granola, gifted from my gluten-free mother
~ homemade dehydrated raspberries, free
You might like:
- Yogurt Cheese: How-To
- Crunchy Almond Granola
- Homemade Tempeh: How-To
- Kombucha - Brew Your Own 'Booch
This post shared at Simple Living Wednesday, Country Homemaker Hop, Rural Thursday, Pennywise Platter, Sunday School, Wildcrafting Wednesdays, and Fight Back Friday.