Pantry Basics: Homemade Yoghurt

Homemade Yoghurt with Persimmon

I didn’t attempt to make my own yoghurt until I had our son, T. We always had some in our fridge, but I guess it never occurred to me that it would be worth the effort to make my own. Prompted by a desire to minimize T’s exposure to additives as he started on his first solids, I tried a recipe I found in a baby food cookbook that was unfortunately a dismal failure. But Google, combined with a mother’s obsessive compulsion can be a powerful thing. The outcome: the unearthing of a recipe from Harold McGee—master of culinary science and precision. A version of it (see below) now resides in my mobile phone.

In addition to the assurance that T gets yoghurt free of sugar and other additives, homemade yoghurt simply tastes better. For one, it’s not mouth-puckeringly tart. And you can control flavour through your choice of milk and starter. When I can, I use organic whole milk and T’s favourite baby yoghurt as a starter. He enjoys his yoghurt with fruit. When he was much younger, he would have it with cinnamon-apple or dried apricot puree. Now he has it with bananas, blueberries, apples, persimmon or whichever fruit of the moment he happens to be obsessed with. It has also made its way into our cake batters, salad dressings and marinades.

When we can afford the wait, I make Greek-style yoghurt by draining regular homemade yoghurt. It has the texture of sour cream and a delicate acidity, which can be quite addictive. But most times, I include the ingredients listed in red below and make a deliciously creamy yoghurt that doesn’t need additional draining to thicken. I now can’t imagine not having a jar of the homemade stuff in the fridge at all times.

About Su-Lyn Tan

Su-Lyn is Aun's better half and for many years, the secret Editor behind this blog known to readers simply as S. Su-Lyn is an obsessive cook and critical eater whose two favourite pastimes are spending time with her three kids and spending time in the kitchen. She looks forward to combining the two in the years to come.