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Old 07-16-2014, 05:54 PM   #1
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Calling fellow yogurt makers...

I eat a lot of yogurt and my favorite is made with half and half using yo'gourmet as the starter.

The yogurt I'm eating now was origanally started using dannon plain yogurt as the starter then just dipping out of the previous container to start the next batch. It's much cheaper than using the powdered starter and it tasts just as good but the yo'gourmet powder makes a much firmer yogurt.

What I'm wanting to know is has anyone tried using yogurt made with yo'gourmet as a starter and if so how well did it work?
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Old 07-17-2014, 07:37 AM   #2
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I haven't tried it, Gwen, but I don't see why it wouldn't work? It's the active cultures you want, and given that the yo'gourmet works to get the first batch going - I'd sure think it would keep on givin' just like adding regular active-culture store-bought yogurt would!

I use a Fage 2% to start mine, then I keep using the current batch over to start the next batch - so far it's working great.

Let me know if you try it - if so, it might be worth keeping a yo'gourmet around "just in case" -
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Old 07-17-2014, 02:22 PM   #3
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Looking for information on this subject has been like looking for hen's teeth but I finally came across a paper on the subject that talked about using commercially produced starters.

In short it said that yogurt made with packaged starters such as yo'gourmet can be used as a starter for one or two additional generations but after that the quality and texture will begin to decline until it becomes unusable. Also saying that if you want consistent quality and texture generation after generation you will need to purchase an heirloom starter off the web.

I eat a lot of yogurt and living on a fixed income I have to be as frugal as possable with my food dollar. I love the thick texture and great quality you get using the yo'gourmet starter but it's just too expensive to use on a regular basis and since the heirloom starters aren't any more expensive I'm thinking I'll do a little experimenting. I'll let you know how it goes.
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Old 07-17-2014, 02:28 PM   #4
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The little cup of Fage is under a buck and lasts multiple batches - and I make a gallon at a time! I can get it at WalMart or Trader Joe's and some other grocers in the small cups - they're either 6 or 8 ounces, can't remember for sure? I think they're .69 at WalMart though.

Make sure it's not the nonfat though. I've used both the 2% and the whole milk and both work fine - the 2% is usually easier to find.

The yogurt turns out so thick you can literally turn the cup upside down (I use 4 oz. canning jars) and it won't budge. You gotta spoon it out of the jar.

Just in case your first choice doesn't work!

Glad you found your answer anyway.
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Old 07-17-2014, 02:31 PM   #5
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Do you all know where those starter cultures come from? Look it up and you might not like the answer... You've got to be real sure where you buy that from.
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Old 07-17-2014, 03:11 PM   #6
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Meme, do you know where it is made? If so it would be really helpful if you'd post that info here!
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Old 07-17-2014, 07:02 PM   #7
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Charski or anyone else, would you mind posting "how" you make your yogurt. I've certainly read it on the internet but nothing like having someone who's done it, post their recipe. Thks
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Old 07-18-2014, 07:42 AM   #8
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I'll post about making the yogurt in a liddabit but wanted to say - I posed the question on Amazon as to where the yo'gourmet is made and another customer said the package says it's made in Canada. That's OK by me!
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Old 07-18-2014, 07:55 AM   #9
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Here is the link to the thread started by LJGuitar:

Half whole milk Half heavy cream Yogurt…

I made it the way he does except I use a gallon of half & half from Costco; but in subsequent batches, I found that I didn't really need to heat the half & half up to scalding as it's already ultra-pasteurized so I just heat it to about 115* (in the microwave, in a large bowl - check it with a digital thermometer) and then use about a cup and a half of that warmed milk in a 2 cup measure, stir my 4 oz. of yogurt starter into THAT, then whisk that back into the bowl of warmed half & half. I ladle it into the 4 oz. canning jars, put on the lids and rings, and into the dehydrator at about 115* for 8 hours. Comes out SO thick and so luscious!

If I'm using a Fage yogurt cup, I just use the whole thing, I don't bother to measure out 4 oz. If I'm using from the last batch, one of the 4 oz. cups is enough.

If you have any more questions, feel free to ask, JJJ'sMom!
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:36 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charski View Post
The little cup of Fage is under a buck and lasts multiple batches - and I make a gallon at a time! I can get it at WalMart or Trader Joe's and some other grocers in the small cups - they're either 6 or 8 ounces, can't remember for sure? I think they're .69 at WalMart though.

Make sure it's not the nonfat though. I've used both the 2% and the whole milk and both work fine - the 2% is usually easier to find.

The yogurt turns out so thick you can literally turn the cup upside down (I use 4 oz. canning jars) and it won't budge. You gotta spoon it out of the jar.

Just in case your first choice doesn't work!

Glad you found your answer anyway.
Ok, thanks!! Next trip into town I'll see if they carry Fage yogurt at our Walmart. That would be way cheaper than ordering starter off the net. How many batches do you get before you need to buy a new starter cup of yogurt?

I have a yogurt maker with two extra tubs that make a half gallon at a time. I keep all three tubs going in rotation so that will be a great money saver for me if they carry it. Our Walmart is the only one in about a 50 mile radious so a lot of people drive a long way to shop there. So even though it's a small town they're pretty good about carring a wide variety of products. So I'm hoping they have it.
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:00 AM   #11
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I'll keep my fingers crossed for you Gwen!

I'm on my third batch now of reusing the current batch for starter and it's just as thick as the first batch - so I'm not sure how many batches it will last - but I'll let you know!
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Old 07-18-2014, 09:45 AM   #12
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That's great! Even if I had to drive to the next town over to find it, it would be worth the trip at 69¢ for at the least, 3 batches or more of yogurt.

I really appreciate the help.
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Old 07-18-2014, 10:28 AM   #13
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Gwen, I could never repay you for all the fantastic recipes you've posted here, and which we enjoy so much - so if this is in any way helpful to you -

BTW I was just at Trader Joe's and Whole Foods, they both had the Fage 2% but it was $1.59/small container (I think they're 8 oz.) - I'm pretty sure I remember it being under a buck at WM though.

Even at that, if it lasts at least 3 batches, that's only a little more than .50/batch for starter. Not bad at all really! Beats paying shipping anyway!

Of course, as fast as grocery prices are going up and up and up...
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Old 07-18-2014, 01:44 PM   #14
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Your so sweet, I'm blushing!!
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Old 07-18-2014, 06:02 PM   #15
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Any reason that you use 2% over 4%? And can I assume any yogurt w/ a lot of active cultures works?

Have you ever tried using a "refrigerated probiotic" that has the same cultures?

Thks for the replies, think I'll go hunt down that never before used yogurt maker I have.

Great link Char, thks, very helpful. This reminds me of crème fraiche. Have you ever tried making crème fraiche?
1 T. whole buttermilk to 1 pint (less 1 tablespoon) of heavy cream. Sit in a warm place
6-12 hrs, will depend on the warmth. Mine goes under the kitchen sink in the winter because I have a heat vent right below.

Hmm, makes me wonder if I could get away w/ incubating yogurt there in the winter, I'll have to ck the temp under the sink when we start using the heat.
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Old 07-18-2014, 06:04 PM   #16
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Sry all but another question........have you used any sweetner in your yogurt?
And can I assume that a sweetened yogurt wouldn't be used for the next batch of yogurt?
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Old 07-19-2014, 09:40 AM   #17
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I've never sweetened a whole batch of yogurt. I sweeten what I put in my bowl when I'm eating it with fruit but I sometimes use yogurt in savory recipes and I wouldn't want a sweet yogurt for that.

Not all yogurt, even if it's got live culture in it makes good yogurt starter. I'm eating through a batch right now that was started with Dannon about 6 or maybe 8 generations ago. And while it's good tasting yogurt it has a loose texture that I'm really not wild about. I like a rich thick texture in my yogurt. That is why I was so happy about the Fage yogurt that Char was talking about. I can have my nice thick yogurt and not have to spend money on an expensive starter.
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Old 07-19-2014, 11:14 AM   #18
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I have always used the expensive powdered starter from an on line supplier. It made fantastic yogurt but became too expensive to continue. I always used to make 2 quarts twice a week and ate it with just a drop of ezsweets. Delicious, very thick, and creamy even when i made it with the carb countdown milk I used to be able to buy. Haven't made any the last few years as I gave up yogurt when dx with diabetes. I really miss it. Bet it would be good with the fage as starter.
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Old 07-19-2014, 11:55 AM   #19
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I have always used the expensive powdered starter from an on line supplier. It made fantastic yogurt but became too expensive to continue. I always used to make 2 quarts twice a week and ate it with just a drop of ezsweets. Delicious, very thick, and creamy even when i made it with the carb countdown milk I used to be able to buy. Haven't made any the last few years as I gave up yogurt when dx with diabetes. I really miss it. Bet it would be good with the fage as starter.
Homemade yogurt isn't something you would need to give up on your diabetic diet. The stuff you get from the store that has sugar in it yeah, that would be bad for you, but the stuff you make at home using half and half is good for you.

Also the longer you incubate your yogurt the lower carb it gets. People who have Crohn's are instructed to incubate their yogurt for 24 hours, since most of them can't tolerate any lactose at all. I incubate mine for 12 hours and I find that works really well for me. I don't get any blood spike at all from it. What you buy in the store is usually incubated only 3 to 4 hours.

I was having a lot of problems in the beginning tolerating my dibetic meds. The intestinal distress was so bad if I wanted to go on an outing away from home I would have to skip taking my meds that morning, which you know is really bad. My Dr suggested adding homemade yogurt to my diet and within two weeks I was able take my meds and lead a normal life.
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Old 07-19-2014, 12:12 PM   #20
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Hello all!
Just popping in on your conversation.....Stonyfield and Trader Joe's both make a Whole Milk Plain yogurt that works beautifully when making your own yogurt with Cow's milk. If you want to make yogurt from goats milk (it will never be as thick as cow's milk yogurt)...than you need to use a Greek yogurt (preferably full fat if you can find it).
I haven't purchased yogurt cultures .... But I have purchased kefir grains (water and milk). Just seems simpler (and cheaper) using culture from already made yogurts.
I am happy to see so many people making their own.....there is nothing like your own homemade products.
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Old 07-19-2014, 01:19 PM   #21
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I am happy to see so many people making their own.....there is nothing like your own homemade products.
I couldn't agree more. The food we make for ourselves is always better and you know it's just good food that's not loaded with a bunch of chemicals.
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Old 07-19-2014, 03:14 PM   #22
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Very true and I get a lot of satisfaction out of making my own stuff anyway, always have. The bologna we make is nearly as good as Oscar Mayer USED to be, and I know exactly what's in it - no lips or dangly parts or stuff I'd just rather not eat, and no sugar!

I don't sweeten a whole batch of yogurt either. Occasionally, I'll sweeten about 4 cups of the liquid that's left when I've already filled a bunch the 4 oz jars, then fill the jars and mark separately so I know which jars are sweetened. But honestly, for us, it works best to just do the whole batch unfettered and then sweeten to taste when eating. I love mine with sliced toasted almonds, a pinch of cinnamon, and SF honey drizzled on top. DH is more a fan of the fruits - strawberries or raspberries - that I freeze presweetened with a little DaVinci SF simple syrup - on his yogurt.

I use the 2% because it's easiest to find in the small cartons that I use for starters. Nonfat is easy to find too but I don't use that.
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Old 07-19-2014, 05:19 PM   #23
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Very true and I get a lot of satisfaction out of making my own stuff anyway, always have. The bologna we make is nearly as good as Oscar Mayer USED to be, and I know exactly what's in it - no lips or dangly parts or stuff I'd just rather not eat, and no sugar!
Oh!! I haven't had any homemade bologna since my Grandmother passed. Would you mind sharing your recipe?
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Old 07-19-2014, 05:31 PM   #24
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Sure! Let me dig it up - BRB!
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Old 07-19-2014, 05:39 PM   #25
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Recipe for Bologna

1 pound pork shoulder butt, finely ground
1.5 pounds beef chuck, finely ground

2.25 tsp. salt
.5 tsp. Cure #1 (pink salt)
1.5 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. onion powder
.5 tsp. white pepper
.5 tsp. dry ground mustard, packed in spoon
.5 tsp. ground coriander, packed in spoon
.25 tsp. nutmeg
.25 tsp. allspice
1 Tbsp. light corn syrup (I used SF honey)
.25 cup cold tap water
.5 cup finely powdered skim or whole milk powder

Measure all seasonings, milk powder and water into bowl and stir til mixture is uniform. It will be a thin paste. Refrigerate about 15 minutes.

Mix well into ground meat, kneading til thoroughly combined, about 3 minutes. Cover and refrigerate overnight. You want it really cold, about 34*.

Make about 1 cup or a little more crushed ice (I do this in the VM according to the instructions in the book).

Place half the meat mixture into food processor, and add half the ice. Keep remaining meat and ice cold in fridge/freezer.

Process first half for 30 seconds, take the temp. Process at 30 second intervals until the temp is at 40*. Now process at 15 second intervals til 50* is reached, OR until it's emulsified - should be thick and look like ice cream and be glossy on top.

Smooth into a well-greased loaf pan.

Repeat with second half of meat and ice. Smooth into pan. I used my wet hands to shape into a nice round-topped loaf so it would fit the bread!

Cover pan tightly with foil, place on a rack in steamer with water at a boil, cover and lower flame to keep it at a good steam, and steam til internal temp is 160*. I have a digital probe thermometer that attaches by a cord to a readout unit, so I just put the probe into the center of the meat, closed the foil tightly around it, ran the cord out under the lid, and set the alarm for 160*.

Carefully remove pan from steamer. Remove foil. Pour off any accumulated juices, then turn meat out onto a rack (I put a paper-towel-lined plate underneath the rack to catch any drippage) and let cool an hour, the refrigerate overnight before slicing.

Made about 3 pounds of yummy bologna!

You can make this in a large round casing, I just didn't have any - and I like that the loaf pan means the bologna fits the bread so closely! DH really loves this.
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Old 07-19-2014, 10:31 PM   #26
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Yummo on the bologna recipe, thks Char.
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Old 07-20-2014, 07:14 AM   #27
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Wow!! Thanks I'm going to be making this soon.
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Old 07-20-2014, 09:08 AM   #28
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It sounds kind of daunting but it really isn't. The results are well worth the little bit of time it takes to make it!
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Old 07-20-2014, 11:15 AM   #29
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We make our own sausage so it really sounds pretty easy compared to stuffing and smoking sausage.

Your bologna is so pretty!! I can't wait to get to the grocery store and get the ingredients to make it with. What my Grandmother used to make was a much more rustic version but then she didn't have a food processor and she did it all by hand. Of course they also slaughtered their own pigs to make it with. God, I've gotten lazy in my old age. Lol
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Old 07-20-2014, 11:35 AM   #30
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What do you count your yogurt as carb and calorie wise .... I love homemade yogurt and can eat it even being lactos intolerant ... I used to use some of the davinci sugar free syrups for flavors when I wanted it to taste like a real treat ... But just plain is yummy when It is made from cream
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