Wednesday, 23 October 2013

How I've been making yoghurt in the dehydrator

Some people were asking, so here's my method... I've been making yoghurt, and using the dehydrator to incubate it.

I start with some milk, about a litre. Warm it up to 80 degrees Celsius, then let it cool down to 37 degrees. Stir in some yoghurt from the last batch. That's plain, unflavoured yoghurt. My very first starter was some Jalna Greek Style, which was delicious, and I haven't bought any since.

Now, the dehydrator comes in. Instead of pouring this milk/yoghurt mix into a thermos or other container, I portion it into very clean Tupperware containers (snack cups, which are 1/2 cup sized). Here they are, all neatly filled.

Do you notice one of them is half the size again? There's a reason for that.

I put the seals on, then stand them in the dehydrator, which is set at about 37 degrees.

This is a Harvest Maid dehydrator. These cups would normally NOT fit in the trays, but I've added a spacer ring. It works perfectly.

The lid of the dehydrator goes on after this, of course. I test the temperature from time to time, because, although the machine has a temperature dial, it's not that accurate.

Most of the cups have colourful lids, but I make sure one has a clear lid.

Now we go away for a few hours. Don't fuss with the yoghurt, it doesn't need you.

Some time later in the day, if you pick up the cup with the clear lid, you'll be able to see that it has set. No need to open it. If it's clearly still liquid, let it incubate some more.

That's basically it, you've made yoghurt. And look, it's already in portions.

See how nicely set it is. This is how yoghurt is supposed to look.

If you want it to be fruity and sweet, stir in some jam (or fruit, obviously, but jam is less runny). Or just eat it unsweetened, with lovely fresh fruit!

So what was the half sized cup for? That's the starter for next time! You won't eat it by mistake if it looks different.

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