I like yogurt and it is easy to make from the powdered milk that most of us have in our storage. Yogurt is a food produced by the bacterial fermentation of milk. The bacteria that is used are known as “yogurt cultures”. The fermentation caused by the bacteria converts lactose into lactic acid, which acts on milk protein to give yogurt its texture and characteristic taste. Cow’s milk, the protein of which is mainly casein, is most commonly used to make yogurt, but the milk from goats, ewes, mares, camels, and even yaks are used in different parts of the world.
Yogurt is nutritionally rich in protein, calcium, riboflavin, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12. It has nutritional benefits beyond those of normal milk, because it is a probiotic. Often lactose-intolerant individuals can tolerate yogurt better than other dairy products due to the conversion of lactose to glucose, and the fermentation of lactose to lactic acid. One other issue related to cow’s milk is the widespread use of hormones and antibiotics. This brand of dried milk is hormone free, if that’s a concern for you or your loved ones.
Now yogurt is easy to make. Here is a simple recipe using powdered milk.
- 7 cups warm water
- 2 ½ cups powder milk
- 1/2 cup of yogurt or starter culture
Mix the ingredients in the water, if the electricity is working use a blender, if not use a whisk. Once the ingredients are mixed, you can use a yogurt maker, leave it in between 6 to 12 hours. Remove it when it is set and place in refrigerator.
If you do not have a yogurt maker pour the mixture into pint jars and put the lid on. Set the jars in a pan and fill the pan with warm water up to the neck of the jars, between 105-115°. Wrap it in towels, place it is a Wonder box or set it in the sun, to maintain the temperature.
You always need to have a starter culture to make yogurt. The store bought yogurts do not make a good starter for long-term use. They begin to weaken after several uses. Buy and store a powdered culture like Yogourmet Freeze Dried Yogurt Starter and follow the direction on the package. A culture started by one of these powdered mixes will last a lifetime if you take care of it.