Preparation: Sterilize all equipment in hot water (80˚C) for 1 minute.
- 1 Litre homemade nut seed milk (see Nut Seed Milk Recipe)
- Yoghurt starter (see preferences below)
- 2 tablespoons of organic raw honey (required to feed the fermentation process)
- Yoghurt Maker: I suggest the Wholesome ‘me’ Yoghurt Maker as it is specifically designed for GAPS
- Milk thermometer
Yoghurt Starter Options
- Dairy free cultured yoghurt starter powder (measure as per product instructions – add more for thicker result) GAPS Diet Australia have two options: Custom Probiotics Starter #2 (GAPS) and Gi Pro Starter (SCD)
- Two – three Dairy free probiotic capsules (Bio-Kult) per litre of milk
- 1/3 cup of homemade yoghurt as a starter per litre of milk
If the nuts are not mixed really well with the water during the milk making process or the milk is not of good quality, the yogurt may not form properly. The mixing of the milk is important in determining how good the yoghurt turns out. Milk not mixed well can result in a watery type yoghurt. If yoghurt separates and shows liquid surrounding the yogurt then there is a problem with the milk and it would need more nut flour added during the milk making process and / or better blending. Adding more yogurt starter will NOT correct this problem. The result of your yoghurt should be a creamy type texture. Commercial milks will often cause this outcome so it is much better to make your own as you will know exactly what goes into it and have control to ensure it is well blended. Don’t give up if you get it wrong the first time, fermentation is an art and sometimes takes a bit of practice with trial and error before you master it.
- Bring milk close to boiling (approximately 80°C) in a stainless steel saucepan & stir occasionally. By bringing the milk close to boiling point (no higher than 80°C) you destroy any bacteria which may be lingering in the milk that can interfere with the fermentation process. It is important not to boil the milk as it will change its taste. (Boiling point is set at 100°C).
- Take the saucepan off the stove and set aside to cool down. You can cool it down faster by filling your sink with cold water and ice and submerging the base of the saucepan in the cold water. Keep an eye on the thermometer until it reaches between 38-45°C. As it is cooling down, you may add the honey and stir well with a whisk. It is always easier to mix the honey when the milk is still warm.
- After the milk has cooled to 38-45°C, you may add your yoghurt starter. Please refer to the yoghurt starter options listed above. If you are using a powdered starter or probiotic, be sure to first stir the powder into 15mls of milk in a separate sterilised cup to ensure that the starter does not clump when added and stirred well into the rest of the milk. It is important to stir the starter well so that it blends well with the all the milk. You can do this slowly and gradually with a whisk.
IMPORTANT: Make sure you add the yoghurt or starter after it has cooled down between 38 – 45˚C and not any hotter or it will kill the beneficial bacteria. Stir the mixture well and pour the mixture into the yoghurt maker jars or glass dish and place into the yoghurt maker.
- Set the timer for the desired incubation period and ferment the yoghurt for 8 – 12 hours at a temperature range between 38˚C and 45˚C.
- When the fermentation is complete, transfer the yoghurt to the fridge to set for 6 hours before consuming.
FLAVOUR: Fruit and honey are good natural sweetener options to add flavour. *Be sure not to add any fruit to the yoghurt before fermentation as this may allow mould or harmful bacteria to proliferate.
Keeps for up to one week in the fridge.
Nut yogurt will not naturally become as thick as traditional yogurt. If you would like your yogurt to be thicker, try the following options.
- Add in a few spoonful’s of chia (ground or whole, to your preference) after incubating and let sit for a few hours in the fridge.
- Double the amount of yogurt starter.
- Drip your yoghurt with a cheesecloth.
- Use less water measurements than suggested during the milk making process.
- Some nut milks may require more than the suggested starter amount of starter on the bottle to optimise thickness.
- For best results make your own nut milks using water and nuts mixed in a blender.
- Store bought milks are all different and usually impossible to make yogurt with due to additives and manufacturing processing.
- If you experience separation in the milk this is caused by milk not being mixed properly and adding more yogurt starter will NOT solve this problem.
- Using Almond flour is much easier then blanched almonds to make yogurt with. The yogurt will be smooth without any nut particles.
- Most alternative milks require 1 to 2 tablespoons of honey added to the mixture. This gives the starter cultures an environment to reproduce.
- It’s a good idea to add the honey to the milk when it is still warm so that it will mix well with the milk.