For my birthday, six months ago, I bought the book Home Dairy by Ashleigh English. I read it cover to cover at least twice but didn't try a single recipe...until yesterday.
Below is exactly what I did as a novice yogurt maker, and our yogurt came out perfect. It was thick, and it balanced the tangy and sweet flavors wonderfully.
On the next go round, I may strain the yogurt in a cheese cloth for an even thicker consistency. I mixed in some peach butter with one serving and it was AMAZING!
3 Cups 1% milk
2 Tablespoons honey-flavored Greek yogurt
1. Heat milk in a double boiler until it reaches 180 degrees.
2. Pre-heat slow cooker on low.
3. Remove milk from heat and let cool to 110 - 115 degrees.
4. Stir in yogurt until well mixed.
5. Pour mixture into 3 jelly jars, seat lid and tighten rim.
6. Turn slow cooker off and place jars of yogurt inside and cover with lid.
7. Let sit overnight.
8. Refrigerate and eat. Use for up to two weeks.
One of the best parts of this process was explaining to our 7-year-old daughter the difference between good bacteria and bad bacteria. Her interpretation went something like this: "There are two kinds of bacteria. One is the kind that eats dead birds and one is in yogurt that we eat." I'll take that. If she one day wins a Nobel prize for her work with bacteria, I will look back on our first yogurt making days with a smile.
I highly recommend giving Ashleigh's book a read. I hope to try out butter and mozzarella cheese sometime this week!