Saturday, March 28, 2009

Mosaru Maduva Vidhana (Yogurt Preparation Tips)

Couple of months before, one of my readers had asked me the method for preparing curd/yogurt. Sorry for the delay in publishing the yogurt preparation. Though I have been preparing curd/yogurt for more than half a decade, I fail many a times in getting the thick curd. Milk just curdles some time & tastes bitter or sometimes yogurt becomes sticky.

Here are some of the tips in preparing yogurt:
  • Mix a tbsp of yogurt to 250ml of lukewarm milk for proper fermentation.
  • Never mix yogurt to very cold milk(milk just taken out of the refrigerator). So, is the case with hot milk. Don’t mix yogurt to very hot milk.
  • Mix the yogurt to milk only after sunset or early sunrise. If the outside temperature is very cold, then it may take up to 24hours to get nice curd/yogurt. So, plan accordingly. I usually mix milk to yogurt in the night at around 9p.m or 10p.m. The curd would be nicely done by 11a.m next day.
  • Never mix yogurt to milk during hot noons or during sunset. (I actually don't know why it is not advised to mix yogurt to milk during sunset, if you know the reason, do let me know. This is my mom's piece of advice).
  • Always prepare the curd in a closed container (like a steel tiffin box or Tupperware box).
  • Do not place the curd + milk mixture near any of the stoves, microwave or oven. The milk will get curdled because of the heat from them.
  • Don't keep stirring in between & try to avoid moving it from one place to other until milk is completely fermented.
  • If you need very thick yogurt (like set curd), do not add water to the milk & use full cream milk only. If normal yogurt is your choice, you could add 100ml water to 250ml full cream milk.
  • Never try to prepare yogurt with low fat milk or skimmed milk. Always use, fresh milk or full cream UHT milk I use Nandini UHT milk here & am very happy with the result.
All the above tips are mostly applicable for people leaving in places where weather is somewhat warm and humid - i.e. Deccan plateau in India, Malaysia, Singapore etc.

Few of my friends in US say that, they keep the yogurt mixed milk for fermentation inside the oven with just the oven lights ON. I have no idea about this, as I was always fortunate to stay in warm weathers & never lived in temperatures below 14 degree Celsius anytime :)

I request all of you to share your secret tip for preparing curd/yogurt. Since it is highly dependent on the weather, it would be good if you can mention the country you currently live in and weather.