Yes, that is Nicco in the picture, trying to get a little almond milk yogurt so he can be a taste tester like his human father. Good thing we love that little fur ball.
Making non-dairy yogurt has been on my list of things to do for some time. Greek yogurt is one of the things that I really miss. My husband and I started making non-fat yogurt at home about 20 years ago. It was an every weekend event that resulted in enough yogurt to made breakfast sundaes for breakfast every day for the week. We both miss yogurt. I buy soy yogurt sometimes but it just isn’t the same. It is better than nothing, but not something either of us got excited about. I knew that soy yogurt probably wasn’t something that I wanted to make since I wasn’t thrilled with the commercial versions. I have been hoping that almond or coconut yogurt may be better.
When I saw a recipe for almond yogurt in Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen I was thrilled to have a starting point for making yogurt. I read her recipe a few times and it just didn’t feel to me like it would result in something that was close to what we used to love. I took her recipe, made a few tweaks, and started the “non-dairy yogurt experiment two days ago”. The results……..you will need to keep reading.
First I made a batch of almond milk, thicker than I usually make, but nowhere near as thick as Ani, and I strained mine which she doesn’t. I just couldn’t imagine the almond bits in the end product. After I made the milk I added lemon and the probiotic powder I bought to make nut cheese. I also added a little agave to give the probiotic something to eat. Then we waited, and waited, and waited for me to finish the experiment.
Almond Milk Ingredients: (Makes 5 cups almond milk)
1 cup almonds, soaked overnight
6 cups water
3 cups almond milk made from recipe above
1/8 lemon, juiced
1 teaspoon agave
½ teaspoon probiotic powder (All flora brand)
Ingredients to thicken the yogurt:
1 cup almond milk (made earlier)
3 tablespoons cornstarch, dissolved in the almond milk
Make the almond milk using the ingredients in this recipe. To three cups of the almond milk add the lemon juice, agave and probiotic powder and stir to dissolve the powder. Place the yogurt in a warm place to culture. I used my dehydrator set on 95 degrees. My yogurt cultured for about 8 hours. I checked it every few hours to see if I liked the taste. When it tasted like yogurt I removed it from the dehydrator.
The texture was far too thin so I refrigerated the yogurt overnight, hoping it would get thicker (which dairy yogurt does). No luck.
To thicken the yogurt I combined another cup of almond milk and three tablespoons or cornstarch and cooked it until it looked like a cooked roux (whisking continually). Once the starch had completely cooked I turned off the heat, add the cultured yogurt and whisked to combine. The resulting yogurt was very thick. Once it cooled I refrigerated this yogurt. In the frig it got even thicker and actually cracked on top. I whisked the yogurt so that it was smooth before serving.
Nutritional Information (assumes 4 servings of approx 9 ounces each):
Amount Per Serving
Calories From Fat (43%) - 27.83
Total Fat - 3.01g
Saturated Fat - 0.01g
Cholesterol - 0.04mg
Sodium - 151.22mg
Potassium - 196.08mg
Total Carbohydrates - 7.96g
Fiber - 1.18g
Sugar - 0.09g
Protein - 1.06g
This tastes similar to soy yogurt, only better in my opinion. I am happy with the flavor of this. However this does take a while to make. I don’t know that I can reduce the time this process takes, but I am going to try. That is my project for this weekend.
Today’s experiment is raw cookies. I used the pulp from carrot, apple, celery and ginger juice and added nuts, coconut and a few dates. The cookies are in the dehydrator now. The “batter” tasted great before I put it into the dehydrator. Hopefully the dried version will also be good. My husband has always loved cookies. He loved them too much in fact. He is eagerly awaiting his taste testing responsibilities on this project. The cookies themselves are thick so I expect them to be in the dehydrator for a number of hours. I should have the results later tonight though.