Thursday, September 14, 2006

Homemade Plain Yogurt

Here's a snippet from the vows for marrying a Turk: "I promise to love, honor, and eat yogurt every single day of my life." Well, practically... Turks love their yogurt!

Yogurt is very easy to make, once you've tried it and are familiar with the process. Homemade yogurt may not be as thick as commercial, but tastes better without the additives.


  • 1 quart whole milk (nonhomogenized if you can get it, thus cream will form on top)
  • a yogurt or candy thermometer
  • ½ cup starter plain yogurt (can be from commercial--make sure with live cultures, or from a previous batch of homemade)


Slowly heat the milk to 180 degrees F, stirring occasionally. Turn off heat and allow milk to cool to 110 F. Stir in the starter yogurt. Transfer the mixture to a container for incubating and leave for several hours or overnight (6-9 hours). The longer you leave, the firmer it will get, but also the taste will get more bitter.

There are cheap yogurt incubators on the market that do a great job. You can also put it in a glass, enamel, or stainless steel container, cover, and put in a warm spot. Some people have success in the oven with a pilot light on or in a dehydrator. I've wrapped mine in towels or a blanket and put in a warm spot. The best reults I've had were with the incubator, but also in the oven with a pilot light have yielded good results as well.

Learning how to make good yogurt at home will save money and provide a better quality yogurt than what is readily accessible in many parts of the US. Until my local co-op opened, if I wanted good, plain whole yogurt, I had to make it myself. Many, many Turkish recipes call for plain whole yogurt. And the health benefits are wonderful. See a few links from the post below on Garlic-Yogurt Sauce.


saray said...

I am a turk form germany and I have been living in north carolina now for over 5 years. My grandmother used to make yogurt all the time. she wrapped the bowl in small blankets. great yogurt. makes me cry thinking about her.
thank you for your blog

SP Sipal said...

Thanks so much for your comment. Grandmothers are such special people. Mine was famous for her chicken salad. I'll have to post her recipe here some time. I've also tried wrapping my yogurt in blankets. Nothing beats good homemade yogurt. Thanks for visiting! :-)

azmirima said...

Hi Susan, this's asmi from indonesia. Thanks to share recipes of turkish =)
i really love Turkey and yogurt also..
mm, i really excited about turkish yogurt which is something sticky & elastic. hhee, i don't know how to describe it.
do you know how to make that kind of yogurt? some people say that we must add orchid powder. what kind of orchid powder? when we must add it in our yogurt? and where I can buy that orchid powder?
thank you so much...=)

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