Following the discussion of these special considerations you can find links to detailed instructions for making raw milk yogurt using each type of yogurt culture.
SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS WHEN MAKING RAW MILK YOGURT
Making yogurt with raw milk differs from using pasteurized milk and several factors should be considered.
KEEPING THE CULTURE ALIVE FOR RAW MILK YOGURT
Direct-set varieties of yogurt starter cultures are intended for one-time use. In contrast, heirloom cultures are meant to be continued from batch to batch.
If using a perpetuating yogurt culture, it is necessary to first make a pasteurized mother culture to inoculate each batch of raw milk yogurt, to keep your yogurt starter healthy.
Yogurt made from a direct-set starter and raw milk may not re-culture well.
BACTERIA CONTENT OF RAW MILK FOR YOGURT MAKING
We recommend using only fresh milk to make yogurt. Raw milk comes with its own set of beneficial bacteria. If your milk is a few days old or wasn't chilled quickly enough, that bacterial count can be high. This means that the culture you introduce could have some hefty competition, which can lead to yogurt with an “off” flavor or yogurt that does not culture properly.
Now, if you are interested in how to make yogurt from fresh milk, Click here to download our Yogurt Guide and Recipe book and start making your own delicious and healthy raw milk yogurt at home!
TEXTURE OF RAW MILK YOGURT
Raw milk generally makes yogurt that has a much thinner consistency than yogurt made with pasteurized milk.
There are several ways to thicken raw milk yogurt. The simplest option is to drain whey from the yogurt using butter muslin or a tight-weave cloth. There are other options available for thick yogurt too, but some of these require heating the milk to temperatures not compatible with raw milk.
Raw milk is not homogenized; therefore, as the milk cultures and the yogurt sets, the cream will rise to the top. The top layer of the raw milk yogurt will be more yellow and of a much thicker consistency. This layer can be scooped off and eaten alone or mixed into the yogurt.
RAW MILK YOGURT: POTENTIAL RISKS
Although most people who consume raw milk do not feel that raw milk is inherently dangerous, there are risks to everything and people have become ill from raw milk. It is also possible to become ill from pasteurized milk. Talk to your farmer, research, and decide if these risks are right for you.
Using a Thermophilic (Heat-Loving) Re-Usable Starter Culture. This includes: