This past weekend I biked to Ojai with some friends. One of our friends is from Bulgaria and was telling us about how in Bulgaria you don’t ever buy yogurt in the store, they don’t even have it. You buy milk and make yogurt. I have heard a lot of people talking about making their own yogurt lately, but I have never tried it. Not only is it WAY cheaper to make your own yogurt, it is more sustainable as you will not be wasting packaging AND yogurt at the grocery store is often PACKED with sugar. Your yogurt can be exactly how you want it.
I chose to make coconut yogurt but you can make regular dairy if you prefer it!
2 (14-ounce) cans coconut milk
4 probiotic capsules, or 4 tablespoons store-bought coconut yogurt
2 tablespoons raw sugar, maple syrup or honey (optional: I like it put honey or berries on top for sweetening).
-Warm the oven and sterilize the jars: Warm the oven for about 5 minutes, until it reaches about 100°F, then turn off the heat — leave the light on to help keep the oven warm. Fill the jar you’ll use for storing the yogurt with boiling water to sterilize them. Let stand a few minutes, then pour the water out.
-Pour the coconut milk into a saucepan: Shake the can of coconut milk, open it, and pour it into a medium pot. Whisk until the milk is smooth.
-Warm the coconut milk: Place the pan on the stove over medium heat and warm until the coconut milk starts to simmer. Whisk the milk and turn down the heat to low. Continue cooking on low, whisking occasionally, for 5 to 10 minutes.
-Cool the milk: Cool the milk until it’s just warm to the touch, about 100°F.
Add the probiotics: Twist open the probiotic capsule and pour the powdery contents over the milk. Whisk to combine. OR whisk in 4 tablespoons store-bought coconut yogurt.
Add the sugar, maple syrup or honey. Whisk together well.
– Pour the coconut milk into the sterilized jar(s) and screw on the lid(s). Place into the oven — turn the oven light on to keep the environment warm. Leave for 9 to 24 hours without disturbing.
-Chill the yogurt: Place the set yogurt into the fridge and chill for at least 6 hours. The yogurt will become thicker as it chills. After this stage, you might find that the mixture has separated with a yellowish, translucent layer at the bottom and a thicker white layer on top. Stir to recombine or scoop off the top layer for thicker coconut yogurt.
Keep coconut yogurt refrigerated and use within 2 weeks.
If the yogurt develops a pink or grey discoloration on its surface, that means it has been contaminated with bad bacteria. Throw it away and do not eat it!