TRY AND SHARE - making my own yoghurt with Fairment's starter kit
One thing I always have always wanted to try is to make my own yoghurt. For a long time I looked into the option of buying an appliance to make my life easier, but never found really something that made complete sense in terms of space and actual needs. Buying a new machine for the sake of experimenting in my kitchen was not really in my plans.
So when I found the Fairment starter kit on Siradis, I fulfilled my wish and turned it into a great Christmas present to myself. Months after I decided to finally give it a try.
The instructions are available in German only in the kit, however this is also a pretty straight forward process to follow. The leaflet is very well made, providing not only the ultimate information on how to proceed but also details about yoghurt fermentation and various receipes. A separate instruction sheet (the Anleitung on the picture) is also there if you do not have the book at hand.
The kit is very well designed and includes:
the leaftlet of instructions
a Ball Mason jar
a thermometer to assess your milk's temperature
3 sachet of vegan yoghurt culture
one pack of tapioca powder to be used as thickener
a stainless steel container
The kit is available in vegan and 'regular' version - I did purchase the vegan kit, but it can be used with regular cow's milk (or other animal-based dairy).
I purchased it on Siradis for 79,90 CHF (you will find in on the Fairment site for 64,50 EUR - you'll find there also a lot of culture refills which you will not find on Siradis or Alnatura). On Fairment you'll see that the vegan version is more expensive than the regular one; Siradis however is only offering the vegan kit and seems to purchase them from Germany, so the price difference is fairly appropriate.
The kit nicely unpacked and cleaned, it was time to start!
Let's warm up some milk until reaching 80 degrees, and let it cool down in the jar until reaching back 40*. The action seems to sterilize the milk, and 40 is the ideal temperature for the culture to thrive. At this point, you just mix one sachet into the milk nicely to ensure it disperses in the liquid properly, and then the patience game starts.
The jar needs to be place in the steel container, and surrounded with hot water for around 8 hours. After such a long time, check the taste and consistency of your yoghurt: the longer it stays warm, the more acidic and solid it will turn.
After these 8 hours, I found the result to be too liquid still; so I refilled my container with hot water again, and let it rest for another 8 hours. The texture got better, however I decided to strain as much water as possible, using a coffee filter. You can see on the pic how much water got generated for 750 ml milk originally used. I then collected the hard-ish yoghurt after an hour, and added back the needed water until I was happy with the consistency. 750ml of milch turn into a big jam jar of yoghurt, which will last me a little less than a week and stay nicely cooled in the fridge
From all this, I also kept aside in a jar 2 soup spoons of yoghurt and 2 from the water, to be kept in the fridge for the next round of culturing. According to the leaflet, one sachet can lead to up to 10 generations of yoghurt. So far I am very happy with my 2 generations of results!
I read that the remaining water can be drunk or used for other baking experiments like pancakes... sorry, mine ended up in the sink.
While the first attempt was pure, unflavoured yoghurt, I tried for the second test the vanilla version from the leaflet. As the milk warms up, add vanilla sugar and a vanilla bean that will infuse and be removed as you start the cooling process (I used real vanilla paste instead found in Migros).
The process was exactly the same, except that I added my little culture pot instead of the sachet, that I had previously left out for a while so that it reaches out room temperature. I also mixed it all a little more to ensure the vanilla would really diffuse entirely and not fall at the bottom of the Ball Mason jar.
And for the second time, consistency, taste, smell and colour turned exactly into what I was hoping for. You can of course then play around with sweeteners and other flavours to hide the little acidity that remains, but I personally like it. I will also need to experiment with the tapioca powder and play around with the consistenc: it might solve my challenge with the amount of water.
Ultimate Feedback: I love it!
I feel somehow proud of myself, it is such a satisfying thing to know you are eating something that you made yourself. I sincerely expected the process to be complex, but it is far from it. Of course one could think the kit is pricy, but the products' quality is good, and it is the original price to pay for zero-waste, home-made goodness.
Next test from the same Fairment brand will be the Kombucha starter kit I offered hubby for Christmas. Another game of science and patience, as we love it.
Thumb up to Fairment and Siradis!