Monday, June 22, 2009

The Machine. The Yogurt. The Cooked Fruit.

I spotted a used Euro Cuisine Automatic Yogurt Maker a couple days ago for $20 on the clearance shelf at Bed Bath & Beyond. I snatched it up and excitedly hauled my backside to the checkout counter, all the while eyeballing everyone around me like they wanted to take my prize away. Yes, they all thought I was nuts. Who needs a yogurt maker when you can buy yogurt at the store so cheaply?

For me the best part of making my own yogurt is I get to control everything that goes into it. No more high fructose corn syrup, strange stabilizers, or gelatin for me. I can even make non-fat yogurt, it just takes a bit longer to incubate. If you eat a fair amount of yogurt you need one of these things!

This little machine makes it so easy to throw together a batch of yogurt that I have no idea why this isn’t more common to do. It should be! I’ve topped the yogurt here with cooked fruit, but have also enjoyed it with fresh strawberries and a drizzle of honey so far. I’ll be making my own yogurt from now on for Greek tzatziki sauce and Indian cucumber yogurt sauce too.

You’re also going to need a candy thermometer, a cheapie will work fine. This recipe makes a nice thick yogurt.

4 1/2 cups whole milk (Organic preferably)
1 (5.3 or 7 ounce) container plain Oikos Organic Greek Yogurt (Used as a starter)

In a saucepan heat up the milk over medium heat stirring often until it's reached 180 degrees. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

Once cooled to room temperature (hotter will kill off the cultures), mix a little of the milk together with the yogurt until smooth and then pour the mixture back into the pan stirring to combine.

Pour or ladle the mixture into the glass jars. Place the jars in the yogurt machine and cover with the domed lid. Set the timer for 7 hours, or to the manufactures directions. Don’t move the machine during this time or the yogurt may be ruined.

Remove the domed lid carefully so that the condensation doesn’t drop back into the jars. Let the jars cool to room temperature, then cover with the provided lids and chill for at least three hours before using.

Cooked Fruit
This isn’t a recipe; instead it’s a guideline for you to cook freestyle. Use whatever fruit or combination of fruits you like, add a squeeze of lemon or lime juice, and just enough sugar to sweeten the fruit to taste. Frozen fruit and fresh fruit work equally well.

Here’s what I did this time.

2 cups sliced frozen strawberries
1 cup chopped frozen rhubarb
¼ cup granulated sugar
A squeeze of lemon juice
A small pinch of salt

Combine the ingredients in a saucepan over medium to medium high heat and stir frequently for several minutes until the fruit is soft and begins to thicken. Remove from the heat and cool to room temperature. Store covered in the refrigerator.

Recipes by Laura Flowers

Notes: You can purchase acidophilus yogurt starter if you don't want to use a container of yogurt.


Ciao Chow Linda said...

You bring back memories. I still have my yogurt maker from the 1970s and dug it out last year. However, I lost interest after it didn't thicken as well as it should have. Will have to try it with the greek yogurt.

Mary Bergfeld said...

A wonderful find, Laura. I'm sure you'll make good use of it. I, alas, have storage problems so a machine is not on my horizon. Enjoy!

Patricia @ ButterYum said...

Neat! So, does the finished batch of yogurt closely resemble and/or taste like the Greek Yogurt? Will any kind of yogurt work?

The Cooking Photographer said...

Hi Patricia,

It does taste like Greek yogurt and is almost the same consistency. Not every yogurt will work; it has to have live cultures. If it does, then I'm guessing it should be fine.


Esi said...

I have been wanting to make my own yogurt for a while! It sounds pretty easy to do too.

Creative Classroom Core said...

I have been really wanting to try making my own yogurt - thanks for the inspiration! Yours looks great!

Pink Little Cake said...

What a great find, I didn't even know of a yogurt machine, wow, is it easy to make? This is a very healthy option, just the fact that you know what's in it is well worth it.

La Table De Nana said... daughters grew up on this! Granted our yogurt machine would now be an antique..but this is what we made over 30 yrs ago for the girls all the time!We put the cooked fruit too! Sometimes honey etc..:)

You brought back wonderful memories and of course I have no photos.. plus they would have never looked like these!

Great post for me.

Donna-FFW said...

Whata great find, lucky you, and impressed that u used it right away!! Im the type whod buy it and it would end up in the garage.

The Cooking Photographer said...

How neat Monique! That made me happy to hear. What a special memory that is and I will think of it when I make yogurt with my daughter now.

Lol Donna, my mother does that. Eventually I get her gadgets when she sells them at yard sales.

Thanks for the comments everyone!

Heather S-G said...

I am extremely jealous. I want one! This sounds so great...much better than store bought...pfft to the eyeballers :D

DAVID said...

I have never heard of a yogurt maker. I learn something new everyday!

Great photos accompanying this post, too. Love those glass jars where you can see the fruit on top.

Joanna said...

This post is awesome, and comes at a time when I've been harvesting plums and canning like a crazy woman, stuffing containers of uncanned plum jam in the fridge, and as of yesterday, incubating a yoghurt!

EMC said...

Please please please tell me there's one left at Bed, Bath and Beyond! said...

Usually in the local flyers/or Sunday paper there is usually a 20% off coupon for BB&B.

I would totally make this too!

Thanks for sharing!

Tammy said...

I've been curious about the whole homemade yogurt deal. As a result of your post, I'll be checking out my local BB&B's today! Thanks for sharing.

Amanda Mae said...

I want a yogurt machine so bad! :)
I love homemade yogurt.

Anonymous said...

I found your site looking for stewed rhubarb recipes b/c I'm obsessed with rhubarb yogurt and I don't know how to preserve it without using tons of sugar, which I don't want in my yogurt. long does this compote last in the fridge?

Your blog is wonderful!

The Cooking Photographer said...

First, thank-you!

And I usually keep the compote in the fridge for a week, up to a week and a half without any problems.


Anonymous said...

That sounds good! I like yogurt a lot and could easily eat enough of the compote in a week. Plus, it'll probably be good in oatmeal and on top of toast!

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