I really love super thick Greek Style yoghurt! I much prefer really thick tangy yoghurt that doesn’t have any sweeteners added to it! I’ve been making yoghurt since I was a little kid with my mum (however lots of soy yoghurt back then) and I love it!
But last year I figured out how to get that super luscious thick yoghurt (almost Greek yoghurt type thickness but without straining off the whey) at home using a very simple method! My sister in law saw gourmet farmer using an esky for his yoghurt, and how well it worked! This is loosely based on his method, however tailored to using the Thermomix which gives the ability to get really accurate temperatures easily!
In the recipe when you’re heating up the milk I say to keep the milk at 90ºC for a longer time. The reason being, if you hold the milk at a stable temperature for longer it will make the yoghurt thicker by driving out the oxygen and helping in the fermentation process along with helping the proteins to hydrate well and bind as much water as possible. As this isn’t a strained Greek Yoghurt, there will still be some whey that gathers with the yoghurt remaining in the jar when you scoop your spoon of yoghurt into a bowl. You can either leave it in, (it will make the yoghurt a bit more watery) or you can just spoon it out to use in another recipe or dispose of it.
Once you have heated the milk it is important to cool the milk quickly. This helps to produce a thicker curd also. You can cool the milk quicker by filling a bowl with cold water, adding some ice cubes and setting the bowl of heated milk on top.
I’ve learnt that sometimes a less is more approach works best when it comes to the culture, which is why I only use 1-2 Tbsp of yoghurt as a starter. I like to use Jalna Greek Yoghurt for my starter, it always produces a really beautiful yoghurt.
If your family uses a lot of yoghurt, you can double this recipe very easily. Just increase the time of heating the milk and make sure once the 2L of milk reaches 90ºC to hold it at that temperature for at lease another 10 minutes. (Should take around 30-40 mins) and use 2 x 1L glass jars. They should fit side by side in your 10L esky quite easily.
For different flavoured yoghurts you can add vanilla beans or bean paste or for fruit flavours rather than adding fresh fruit that will water down the yoghurt, add fruit compotes or homemade refined sugar free jams.
It’s really quite easy to make beautiful yoghurt at home! I hope you enjoy!
- 1 Litre Non-homogenised Organic Milk
- 1-2 Tbsp Greek Style Yoghurt (with live cultures - I like Jalna)
- 1 Thermomix or a Pot & Thermometer
- 2 Medium Stainless Steel Bowls
- 1 Thermometer
- 1L Glass Jar
- Take the starter culture out of the fridge to bring to room temperature.
- Place the milk into the Thermomix and heat 20 Mins/90º/Speed 3. You will notice that the milk will reach 90º at around the 10 minute mark, but hold it at that temperature for the full 20 minutes. (Read why in the notes above the recipe)
- Fill a medium bowl with water and some ice cubes and place another bowl on top to make an ice bath. Pour the warmed milk into the bowl on top and let sit to cool to 38º - 40ºC. Check the temperature with a thermometer. Be careful that it doesn't drop below 35º. This should take about 20 minutes. It's important to reduce the heat quickly to produce a nice thick curd. (Alternatively, you can keep pouring the milk back into the Thermomix to check the temperature, but I find it easier to just use a Thermometer.)
- While the milk is cooling, place 2 Litres of water into the Thermomix and heat 3 Mins/45º/Speed 3. Pour the warmed water into a small 10L esky. Repeat this process. Depending on the height of the jars you use to set your yoghurt, you will need 3-4L of water.
- Remove a cup of the cooled milk into a cup or bowl, and stir or whisk in the starter so its smooth and there are no lumps.
- Pour this mixture back into the bowl of cooled milk and stir to combine briefly before pouring into a 1L glass jar. Secure the lid and place the jar into your esky filled with water. The water should be surrounding the jar but not covering the lid.
- Leave the jar in the water for 12-24 hours to incubate and ferment. Depending on how tart you like your yoghurt will determine how you long you leave the yoghurt to ferment. Around the 12-14 hours mark you will have a really lovely mildly tart yoghurt. Around this time is when I like to take mine out and place straight into the fridge to set firm.
- Once completely cooled, your yoghurt is ready to eat!
- And don't forget to save a couple of Tbsp for your next batch of yoghurt!
- Try not to disturb the yoghurt in the first 6 hours when the yoghurt is incubating as this can interfere with the yoghurt setting properly.