How to make yogurt at home

Homemade Yogurt
Recipe

Yogurt is a popular food rich in probiotic content. Milk is cooling to body. However, when cultured to yogurt, it becomes heavy to digest and warming by nature.
Ingredients:
Milk (whole, organic)                                             4 cups
Yogurt culture                                                         1 tsp in summer or 2 tsp in winter
(From previous batch/
Good quality commercial yogurt with live
Bacteria and no other additives/
Commercial yogurt culture)

Towel                                                                      1

Glass jar/ container                                                1

Method:
Boil milk in a large heavy bottom pot. Allow it to cool enough to be lukewarm. It should neither be too hot nor cold. Put the yogurt culture in glass jar. Top with milk. Give a gentle stir. Close the lid and wrap in thick towel. Leave it undisturbed for 6-8 hours. Best is to leave it overnight by the stove top in a towel wrap. It will be ready by morning. If living in warm areas, it can be left as such with no wrap. It should be thick and firm when ready. If it has not set after 6-8 hours, check every hour for up to 12 hours. If it does not set even then, something has not been sufficient. It could be the temperature, surroundings or the quantity of the culture. Try again.
Eat fresh or refrigerate when ready.
Some interesting facts about Yogurt
·        During the culturing process, lactose in milk is converted to acetic acid, which can be easily processed by the body. Hard to digest casein is also predigested making it easier to digest.
·        Yogurt has a sweet and sour taste. It is good for balancing Vata but aggravates Pitta and Kapha
·        Fresh homemade yogurt does not vitiate Pitta much. As it ages, it sours and ferments. Beyond 48 hours yogurt aggravate Pitta.
·        It is grahi (binding) by nature, thereby recommended in diarrhea and dysenrty.
·        Yogurt should not be eaten every day. It is also not recommended in spring and winter, during night or in dinner, due to it kapha increasing nature.
·        Not to mix yogurt with fresh fruits, cheese, eggs, hot drinks, lemons, meats or fish as they are incompatible food combinations.
·        Most of the times this dairy product is eaten cold and is also sour and heavy in quality, it has the capacity to imbalance all the three Doshas if eaten in large amounts. It can cause constipation, increase kapha and mucus too.
·        When used in moderation or diluted with spices as in Lassi, it is nutritive for all seven tissue layers, aids in digestion, replenishes positive flora in the body, is rich in calcium, phosphorus and vitamin B12 and is beneficial in diarrhea.

 This article has been published in Ayurveda Mantra Magazine

©Moninder Kaur Rekhi
DNM (Ayurveda), BAMS, PGDCFT, RNP, RH

Ayurveda Practitioner and Registered Herbalist

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