Hello and welcome to The Compost Bin. I'm Compostwoman and I live with my family in rural Herefordshire. We have nearly four acres of garden and woodland, all managed organically and to Permaculture principles, which we share with Chickens, Cats and assorted wildlife. We also grow a lot of our own food, run courses in all sorts of things and make a lot of compost!

I am a Master Composter and have spent more than a decade as a volunteer Community Compost adviser with Garden Organic and my local Council.
I'm a self employed Environmental Educator so I run workshops and events where I talk about compost, veg growing, chicken keeping, cooking, preserving and sustainable living. I also run crafts workshops and Forest School/outdoor play sessions in our wood.

We try to live a more self sufficient lifestyle here, as best we can, while still having a comfortable life and lots of fun.

To learn more about us click on the About Compostwoman tab and remember to click on the photos to make them full size!

Wednesday 13 January 2010

Making yogurt

Given the very snowy weather we are all having in the UK, I have had a few friends saying to me how hard it is to get certain foodstuffs and one of the most common items which are in short supply are bread, butter and yogurt.

Now we make our own bread and I have a stock of home made butter in the freezer, and yes I do also make my own yogurt, so I shared with my friends how I do it.

And I thought maybe you all might like to know , as well?

I keep a stock of UHT organic milk in out store cupboard, for drinking/cooking but also for yogurt making.

If you use UHT milk you don't need to scald it first...and UHT milk will keep for ages in a store cupboard so it is always on hand.

Yogurt can be made very easily on a small scale with very simple kitchen equipment. It is important to be very clean though!

You will need:
One pint of Sterilised or UHT Milk.
a saucepan or a glass jug if using a microwave.
a thermometer (optional).
2 Tablespoons of live Yogurt.
a thermos flask.
a jug and maybe a basin

Heat the milk until it reaches blood temperature ( 37° C /98.4° F )either on a stove or in the microwave.
In a jug blend in the 2 tablespoons of yogurt with a little of the warm milk, when a
smooth mixture is obtained, pour into the rest of the warm milk and stir.
If using a microwave I just add the yogurt a little at a time into the jug of warm milk.
Pour the milk/yogurt mixture into a pre warmed wide necked thermos flask, seal and leave for 7 hours ( I have left it overnight before now)

Pour the Yogurt into the basin or into smaller containers with lids cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours to allow the
yogurt to thicken further.

Yogurt made this way can be kept in a refrigerator for 4 or 5 days.

If wished add pureed fruit or other flavourings to portions before serving.


  1. What is UHT Milk and does it need to be refridgerated? I have been thinking about making yoghurt, but I like my yoghurt thick and that would require straining through a cheese cloth. Anyway to extend the shelf life? With this method I would have to make a batch weekly and it would only be good for 5 days. I guess I will have to give it a go.

  2. This is the simplest yogurt recipe I've ever seen...and I'm so anxious to try it! I was wondering if you know if it can be done safely with Raw (milk straight from the cow)?

  3. Love the simple Yogurt.
    Since Christmas I've been making my own yogurt with the EsiYo kit I got brought. Although I'm not sure it counts as making your own, as it comes in a powder form with it's own type of flask that you leave it in for 8 hours.
    Tastes nice though and means we don't have to go down to the shops so often!

  4. I had to idea it was so simple - thank you very much for sharing! Hope you & the chooks are coping with all the bad weather xx

  5. I must have another go at yoghurt making - like you it's one of the first things we run out of and the boys love it.

    Rosie x

  6. I have been experimenting with my Easi-Yo kit to see if I can make another batch from the batch I made with the original powder. It works well if you use it straight away but if you don't need it straight away it's a problem. I have tried freezing it but then it comes out all runny and watery. Commercial live yogurts often don't seem to be very alive at all - if the results of the home made yogurt are anything to go by.

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