Monday, February 19, 2018

| yes, instant pot yogurt is that great + drinkable yogurt YUM |

So....we got an Instant Pot for Christmas. And, yeah, it’s basically as great as everyone says it is. It doesn’t really make things noticeably faster (except for beans - wow). It just makes them less effort. You can set it and forget it. You can get ingredients together in the morning and do a delayed start. You can put your hard boiled eggs in there and then make the rest of dinner or breakfast without thinking about them. It’s amazing. I’ll probably be talking about it more in the future.

Right now, though, I just want to say that it has TOTALLY gotten us back into making homemade yogurt. The process is the same as all yogurt-making....bring milk up to 185 and hold for a bit, bring down to 110, add starter (i.e. yogurt), then hold at 100 for 6-10 hours. It’s the holding for 6-10 hours that’s always been a pain for me. I’ve tried keeping my yogurt on the porch during hot months, in the oven with a pilot light on and more. I’ve tried crock pot yogurt, but it was never great.

My Instant Pot yogurt is PERFECT EVERY TIME. I’ll share my method below. But I also want to talk for a minute about whey. Because I typically like to strain my yogurt we end up with a lot of leftover whey. I enjoy using it in baked goods, soup, and for cooking beans. I also like just drinking it cause I’m weird.

But the other day I was at the grocery store and they had Siggi’s brand drinkable yogurt, which I’ve never seen before. I ADORE SIGGI’S YOGURT. I could probably go on about it for days. But it’s so spendy, I rarely buy it. This stuff was on sale for 50 cents a bottle, though, so how could I resist? I knew it would be amazing so I bought several bottles.

I was right. It was AMAZING. My first thought was, “This stuff is so expensive when it’s full price.” My second thought was, “I could totally make something similar on my own.”

So it turns out that my yogurt whey is perfect for making drinkable yogurt! I use 8 oz mason jars and put about 1/2-1 teaspoon of maple syrup in the bottom, plus a few drops of vanilla extract. Then I spoon in about half the jar full of my Greek yogurt. Then I add whey to near the top and shake shake shake. I keep it in the fridge to grab on my way out the door in the morning or for an easy packable afternoon snack at work.

DON’T THROW AWAY YOUR WHEY. It’s awesome stuff. And really can be used in so many baked goods. Especially anything you might use buttermilk in like bread, pancakes, biscuits, etc.

Okay, so back to the yogurt itself. Here’s my process.

1) Put 1 cup of water in the instant pot. Seal. Use the steam cycle to sanitize. Then run the outside of the insert in cold water to cool it down.
2) Put starter on the counter top to come up to room temp.
3) Pour 1/2 gal whole milk into the Instant Pot. Hit “yogurt” button until it says BOIL. Put the lid on and wait until it beeps. Check to see if it’s 185 (whisk gently first). If it is, put the lid back on and hold on BOIL for 5 minutes. If it isn’t put the lid back on (still on BOIL) and check again in a few minutes.
4) While the 5 minute timer is running, fill up the sink with ice water. Once the timer goes off, submerge the outside of the pot in the ice bath. Wait until the just-whisked temperature in the middle of the pot is 110. Remove from the ice bath.
5) Add the yogurt starter (2 T of plain yogurt with live cultures) and whisk gently to combine. If you forgot to bring it to room temp, you can temper it by adding a little of the hot milk to your starter at a time until it’s all warmish.
6) Put the lid back on. Push yogurt until the timer shows. Set timer for 6-10 hours. 6 hours is not very tangy. 10 hours is pretty darn tangy. I usually like 6-7ish but your tastes may vary.
7) Go to sleep or go about my day. When the time is up, move the whole pot WITHOUT STIRRING to the fridge and let it rest overnight or at least 6-8 hours.
8) If desired, use a yogurt strainer to make it into Greek yogurt. Or if you like it thinner, just eat it as is.

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