Raw milk yogurt

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Raw milk yogurt

Postby Aaria on Wed Mar 17, 2010 8:33 am

I have been making raw milk yogurt and skipping the initial heating step. I have read some concerns over the raw milk enzymes taking over, and I did find a different taste after using the last batch to start the new batch several times. I have been using a commercial yogurt as a starter now.

I’m not sure if this is really yogurt or clabbered milk? Either way, it tastes good.

I came across another recipe for “yogurt” that did not use a starter, but instead used raw honey and a probiotic. I guess it would be similar to using the yogurt starters that are sold for this purpose. I think it would be fun to experiment with the different strains, but am wondering if there are any safety issues with growing unknown strains.

Here’s the recipes
1 Tbsp. raw honey per quart of milk.
First mix the honey with 1/2 cup of milk. Shake or stir until well dissolved.
Add back to the big jar and leave on the counter for 2 - 3 days. (When it gels up)
I added a probiotic capsule to the honey milk mix to shake.


Has anyone tried anything like this?
Aaria
 
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Re: Raw milk yogurt

Postby Tim Hall on Wed Mar 17, 2010 11:48 am

If they're "probiotic" bacteria I personally don't see any reason to worry, unless maybe your yogurt simply doesn't set up fast enough to prevent growth from other things. But I suspect worst-case scenario you'll get clabbered milk.

Going a little off topic...Probiotic flora in bees:
This is a really interesting recipe with the honey you posted, and reminded me of some ideas I've been developing the past few days.

Over the past several months researchers with the USDA along with researchers in Sweden have been studying the immunological effects of lactic acid bacteria in honeybees. They identified over a dozen strains of bacteria that are unique to the bees' digestive system, many of which clearly support the bees' health.

These bacteria are often present in raw honey and especially in bee bread (pollen that the bees store for lacto-fermentation). Yes, the bees are wild fermentors too! I plan to do some experiments inoculating all kinds of ferments, everything from beer to yogurt, with bee bread.

If you test out the recipe you submitted, let us know how it turns out.
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Re: Raw milk yogurt

Postby Aaria on Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:41 pm

Interesting! I would love to hear how your experiments turn out.

When using honey/sugar in fermenting, how much of the sugar remains? We are sugar-free and I haven't done any water kefirs or this recipe for that reason, although I am tempted to use it just for fermenting. My mom has tried the recipe though and said it turned out really well.

If you use the bee bread for the yogurt, will you do it in the same way as you would for honey or do you need to treat it differently?
Aaria
 
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Re: Raw milk yogurt

Postby Tim Hall on Thu Mar 18, 2010 8:53 pm

How much sugar you have left over is determined by two factors essentially: duration of fermentation and how much sugar the yeasts can handle before they poop out. I've never made water kefir, so I'm not familiar with how much sugar/juice/whatever goes into it. But I suspect it wouldn't be so much that yeasts couldn't gobble most if not all of it up. As far as duration goes, just test a little of it periodically, and if it's sour with no sweetness, then you have a "dry" or essentially sugarless ferment.

I should point out that honey has a very low glycemic index rating as compared to refined sugars. However honey often contains certain things that seem to inhibit or slow fermentation with less vigorous yeasts (whether it's bacterial or fungal inhibiting enzymes or small amounts of antibiotic propolis, I'm not sure). I have also heard that kefir mothers cultured exclusively on honey may poop out after a while, and this could be due to said factors. So even though honey is nutritionally superior to straight sucrose or fructose, my experience with meadmaking is honey ferments much slower.

Now regarding pollen and bee bread, I have learned to add a small amount of pollen to my ferments which seems to act as a nutrient boost and helps the process along. Conversely too much pollen seems to shut the ferment down - it's a delicate balance.

Bee bread probably contains as diverse a flora as any kefir culture. The question is, will this flora ferment well in dairy or other non-pollen substrates? To test it out with yogurt say, I'll probably make a small starter, like a ginger bug (only a bee-bread bug in milk), and then add that starter to a larger quantity of dairy, if the bug seems to be fermenting well. In other words, I wouldn't use the bee bread as a supplement or adjunct to yogurt, but rather actually test it as a starter culture.
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Re: Raw milk yogurt

Postby Aaria on Sat Mar 20, 2010 4:36 am

Wow, that is really helpful - thanks for all the great information! It gives me a lot to think about. I have never made a bug before, probably because of the use of sugar. I am feeling better about including honey in ferments though now, so that will be fun to experiment with. What ferments do you add pollen to? I would love to hear how your bee-bread bug yogurt turns out.
Aaria
 
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Re: Raw milk yogurt

Postby Tim Hall on Sat Mar 20, 2010 7:00 pm

Right now I only put bee pollen in mead, beer and ginger beer (or other "small" beers). As soon as the weather warms up a little, I'll go rob some bee bread from one of my hives and test it out on both yogurt and ginger beer. Will let you know.
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Re: Raw milk yogurt

Postby Aaria on Sun Mar 21, 2010 6:52 pm

I want to try the ginger beer with the pollen. Can I use the recipe in Wild Fermentation and replace the sugar with pollen, or did you also use sugar? And did yours turn out sweet or sour? The only ginger beer that I've ever had was VERY sweet.

Oh, and my mom's yogurt did not turn out well. Her kefir turned out well, but the yogurt she made with that recipe didn't - it was very thin. She's going to try it again though.
Aaria
 
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Re: Raw milk yogurt

Postby Tim Hall on Sun Mar 21, 2010 10:41 pm

I use honey instead of sugar. The bee pollen is only a very small amount. It's kinda like adding vitamins. Most of the carbohydrates (apart from the small amount of honey the bees mix in) in pollen are bound up in complex, non-fermentable structures. It's very high in protein, minerals and vitamins. Besides, at the typical going rate of $1/oz, you'd have some pretty expensive ginger beer. And adding the pollen is really just something extra...it doesn't necessarily add much to the flavor or character (unless you use a lot, which is not advised - see previous post on shutting down the ferment).

You could always put your ginger beer under an airlock and let it ferment out completely so there's very little or no sugar left. But ginger beer is generally intended to be like a natural soft drink - usually it's only fermented long enough to carbonate bottles and retain a fairly high amount of residual sugar. For most people it's supposed to be fizzy and sweet.

There is another type of ferment few people seem to be familiar with, which is making your own bee bread instead of taking it from the hive. This is done by mixing pollen, honey and water, and allowing it to lactoferment. http://www.fao.org/docrep/w0076E/w0076e11.htm#3.12.2

You should keep in mind though that bee pollen is EXTREMELY nutrient-dense, and some people experience some gastrointestinal distress if they consume too much. You have to start small and slow when consuming bee pollen, like 1-2 teaspoons per day. And some people have been known to have an allergic reaction to eating bee pollen.
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