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Can I make raw milk yoghourt?

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  • Can I make raw milk yoghourt?

    Normally I boil my milk for yoghourt. I've just bought 4 pints of beautiful raw Guernsey milk, and obviously boiling it would rather defeat the object. If instead I mix it with a spoonful of starter and let it sit at about 40 Celsius, is that going to work? I don't want to waste this by turning it into sour milk instead of yoghourt. Advice? Experience?

  • #2
    Sure it will work; centuries of yoghurt-making happened before anyone thought of boiling. It will need some warmth for the culture to develop, but that won't hurt the milk.
    This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Any given day you are surrounded by 10,000 idiots.
    Lao Tsu, founder of Taoism

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    • #3
      Really? I thought the boiling was necessary to kill off any bugs that would otherwise compete with the yoghourt bugs. This may not be an entirely scientific view, however .

      Anyone have experience with this?

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      • #4
        I thought the heating was only to help the yogurt thicken - I understand you get a thinner yogurt if the milk hasn't been heated first? If you heat to blood heat or just above, you won't have killed the beneficial bugs anyway.

        I'm sure they have a method in Nourishing Traditions....

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        • #5
          The culture is most important. Back in the 70s-80s I made yoghurt every week, sometimes with raw milk, mostly with store, but the batches could vary quite bit and it had most to do with the culture. For beginners, get a good culture from a natural food store, then you can feed from batch to batch, until you see it's time to ger some more concentrated culture.
          This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it. Ralph Waldo Emerson

          Any given day you are surrounded by 10,000 idiots.
          Lao Tsu, founder of Taoism

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          • #6
            They actually make starter cultures for yogurt making at lower temperatures specifically.
            For lots of tasty recipes, check out my blog -http://lifeasadreger.wordpress.com/

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            • #7
              Here is one of those cultures: Viili Yogurt Starter | Make Homemade Yogurt with a Viili Culture

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              • #8
                Originally posted by primalknitter View Post
                I was just racking my brain to remember the name of that, thanks!
                For lots of tasty recipes, check out my blog -http://lifeasadreger.wordpress.com/

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                • #9
                  Thanks, everyone! My experiment is going to have to wait until I defrost the 2 pints in the freezer now, as I've drunk the milk in the fridge. (It's delicious.)

                  Found this -
                  Raw Milk Yogurt: A Quick Tutorial from Nourished Kitchen
                  - which should answer all the questions I never knew enough to have .

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                  • #10
                    Hi Hilary, I've been making raw yogurt for a couple of weeks, and my kids have told me it's the best yogurt they've ever had. I use raw Jersey milk (higher fat than Holstein), warm it up gently to 110, though I've heard a local say they warm it up only to around 95, then add in the yogurt culture. I've only ever used leftover yogurt, not an actual, purchased culture. I had some plain Trader Joe's yogurt, and I saved the last 1/2 cup or so to stir in. Then, pour the mixture into pint canning jars (it helps if they're wide mouth), nestle those (there would be 4 for a half gallon of milk) into a crock-pot that is NOT TURNED ON. Pour 110 degree water into the crock, to surround the jars as high as the lower edge of the crock, put the lid on, cover with a couple of towels to insulate. The water bath keeps it warm for much longer, and the crock pot is already better at heat retention than most other vessels. I suppose you could do it in one of those plastic or styrofoam coolers, and skip the water bath part, but you do want it to remain warm as long as possible. Maybe if you do it in a cooler, you could add a bottle of hot water just to keep the ambient temperature up, and change it out every hour or so. After 8 hours, yogurt!

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                    • #11
                      That's reassuring, thank you! (Especially the kid-approved part.)

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