- 2 qts. raw milk
- 8 T. plain yogurt, either from a previous batch or store-bought unflavored/plain with live cultures, like this
Be sure to find a bowl that just fits inside your slow cooker. A 2.5 qt Pyrex mixing bowl just fits inside a standard 5 qt crock pot.
- Fill the crock with warm water, approximately one third full.
- Test the amount of water by placing the mixing bowl in the water and make sure it does not overflow from the crock pot, then remove it.
- Place the lid on crock pot and turn on to the “keep warm” setting.
- Now, place the mixing bowl on top of a pot of water over medium heat (double boiler method). Fill the bowl with 2 quarts raw milk. Heat gently, stirring occasionally.
- While the milk is heating, place 4 tablespoons of yogurt in a glass container. I like to use a glass Pyrex measuring cup.
- When the milk reaches 110F degrees, remove from heat, add approximately 1 cup of warm milk to the yogurt in the Pyrex measuring cup, and stir until combined. (It doesn’t matter how much milk you add, just so long as it is enough to mix the yogurt in thoroughly; this step helps ensure that the yogurt blends into the milk properly.)
- Add this mixture back into the large Pyrex bowl of heated milk and stir.
- Turn off the slow cooker and remove the lid. Then place the bowl gently into the slow cooker, taking care not to get water into the yogurt. Replace the lid and wrap the slow cooker in a towel or blanket.
- Allow yogurt to culture for 8 hours or more. The longer it cultures, the more tart it will be.
- Optional: Raw milk yogurt tends to be runnier than regular yogurt; for thicker yogurt, place cheese cloth in a large mesh strainer or colander and pour the yogurt in. Place this over a bowl and place in the refrigerator. Allow whey to drain until desired consistency is reached. The whey can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 6 months.
- You can then flavor with maple syrup or honey, pureed fruit, or whatever you like.