A rave about Yogurt cannot help sounding somewhat like one of those too good to be true commercials where a miracle product claims to do all things with the minimum cost and effort.

Yogurt’s claim is to be the almost perfect food. The reason? Yogurt contains nearly all of the 60 nutrients required daily by the human body. That’s not a bad effort for one item of food.

The protein that yogurt supplies is both complete and predigested. The lactic acid aids the assimilation of protein, calcium, and iron by the body. If all this sounds too good to be true, wait for the rest.

Yogurt, the wonder food for humans, assists the maintenance of essential bacteria in the digestive tract. This ensures that there are friendly bacteria to fight harmful bacteria and germs that bring disease and illness.

A scientific analysis of yogurt reveals that it has an antibiotic value equivalent to 14 units of penicillin, for every 8oz of yogurt. And that’s not all folks.

Yogurt synthesizes vitamins of the B family. These vitamins are known to be beneficial for hair, nails, skin, the nervous system and mental health.

The ability of commercial Yogurt to meet these requirements is dubious to say the least. This is because added preservatives and artificial flavorings destroy the natural qualities of Yogurt.

If you like to know what you are eating and gain maximum benefits from the Yogurt that you eat, you should make your own. All you have to do is heat 3 cups of low-fat milk with 1 cup of skim milk powder until quite hot, however, do not boil the milk.

Cool milk until lukewarm before blending in 3 tablespoons of commercial yogurt or yogurt culture. Incubate this mixture in a thermos or in jars kept near the pilot light of a gas stove. The yogurt will take about six hours to incubate and should have the texture of the custard when it is finished.

Incubation temperature is the most important aspect of making yogurt successfully. For the best results a temperature between 105 and 120 degrees F is required.

Temperatures outside this range are either too hot or too cold for the culture to survive and multiply. If using a thermos to incubate the yogurt remember that the milk will retain the temperature of the milk that is put into it; If the milk is once again too hot the bacteria will die and you won’t have any yogurt.

Keeping jars of yogurt incubating beside the pilot light is the most unreliable method of making yogurt. For success every time we recommend the Breville Yogurt Maker. It is well worth the expense if you are serious about manufacturing it yourself.

Always sterilize the equipment before using it. Do this by scalding jars with boiling water, the yogurt tastes best if allowed to refrigerate one day before eating.

So, now that you have made some yogurt what are you going to do with it? Why not throw in some fresh fruit and honey. Or top a baked potato with yogurt and chopped chives. Add some to your marinades; it is a good tenderizer for meat.

Substitute it for milk in your favorite recipes, or use it as a salad dressing: Adding a little lemon juice and curry powder or tomato sauce and chili powder. Do it on your vegetables, raw or cooked, with chopped garlic mustard, pepper and salt. It is particularly nice with curried cucumbers, cooked cabbage or cauliflower, making them more nutritious and satisfying.

If you become bored with the endless variety of natural flavorings that can be added, then turn the yogurt into cheese by tying the yogurt in a piece of cloth and hanging over the tap in the kitchen overnight: Make sure the liquid has room to run out. From this cheese an endless number of sandwich spreads can be made. The choice is yours.

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