Friday, June 29, 2012

DIY Greek Yogurt

If you've known me for more than a minute, you probably know I use yogurt like crazy. Specifically, plain Greek-style yogurt. I substitute it for sour cream and mayo, I use it in baking and often make a snack out of it, with a little fruit. I remember the days before it got trendy and you could pick it up pretty cheaply, if you could find it, just because it wasn't very popular. Now that it's become one of the "it" foods, it's nice that it's easily found (even more than one brand!), but the prices have climbed, especially if you find yourself living way too far from the nearest Trader Joe's.

I'll let you in on a little secret... it's the same stuff as the tub of plain ol' plain yogurt a few inches away at about 1/3 the cost. The difference is that it's strained, making it more concentrated and creamy (thus, higher in protein and other nutrients, by measure). It is very easy to do this at home. Yes, you will use a little volume due to the lower moisture content, but not 2/3.

For those of you who make your own yogurt, you can use this method to "Greekify" it, as well.

Tools: Strainer, cheesecloth, butter muslin or a clean tea towel (If using cheesecloth, you'll need to double up so that it's fine enough)
Ingredient: plain yogurt (I use nonfat, but use what you prefer)

Line the strainer with cheesecloth, add yogurt and place in a bowl to catch the extra whey.

Let strain in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours, or until it reaches desired consistency (if you strain it long enough, you actually get soft yogurt cheese, which is also tasty). It should be about the texture of thick sour cream.

That's it! See? Told you it was easy.


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