Monday, 6 August 2012

Yoghurt made with love - Yoghurt اللبن الرائب Laban Zabadi

How to make yoghurt اللبن الرائب Laban Zabadi

We usually have yoghurt in the fridge like we have milk, butter and cheese.  It is great as morning tea for the kids or more often served with fruit for dessert - especially in summer - because I love fresh berries, ALL berries and mangoes and passionfruit or pawpaw.  So many options really.
I have always bought yoghurt اللبن الرائب Laban Zabadi since moving out of home and as I walk through the dairy isle I find myself reminiscing about my mum making a huge batch of yoghurt and thinking I should really start making it myself.  So, inspired by my mother in law who bought me a yoghurt maker for my birthday last year I undertook to learn how to make Yoghurt - Laban Zabadi at home.  Initially I used the yoghurt maker following the manufacturer’s instructions and using packets of powder.  But the temptation to go without a packet made me look into things further.  I followed my dad’s instructions (since mum is no longer around to ask) and made a very runny, kind of slimy yoghurt which I wasn’t even game enough to taste.  As with most “recipes” from mum or dad I end up needing to refine the instructions.  I am, or rather was, a Scientist and like having a formula because getting consistent results was so important in my previous work life.
Other than the slimy white goo, I made another batch that turned out …well…I don’t know really.  I took a photo but didn’t try this one either.  As you can see it is about half yoghurt and half whey.  The yoghurt looks lumpy and I think this was due to the milk not being fresh enough.  I can’t get milk straight from a cow (but will try and get some next time I go down to Gippsland and visit some in-laws – I am sure milk that fresh would make an absolutely delectable yoghurt!).  

This is not what I would call a good result.  The yoghurt has split, now back to square one.
Anyway, back to the pasteurised, homogenised milk I get from a supermarket.  I have bought some whole (full fat) milk with the longest expiry date I can find.  I am hoping this does the trick.

I was determined to find a formula.  First step…a shopping expedition.  I packed the kids up after Samuel’s morning nap and head off.  We made it home again with the prize, a thermometer, and after lunch and naps I started heating the milk - I was so excited!!
This is the approach I took:
Heat 1 Litre of milk and bring it to 100 ⁰C.  Leave it to cool to 45 ⁰C (very easy with a thermometer and mainly guess work or expertise otherwise).  Remove the skin off the milk surface and add a few spoonful’s of milk to ¼ cup of natural yoghurt.  (I know it seems weird to have to have yoghurt to start but that is why it is called the ‘starter’.  You need a starter to make more then you can keep some of the yoghurt you make as the starter for the next batch.)  Add the yoghurt to the milk and stir it in then pour the milk into a yoghurt maker jar.  Cover with a lid and fill the yoghurt maker with water at 45 ⁰C (instead of boiling water like when you make it with the yoghurt powder as a starter) leave it at room temperature for between 10 and 24 hours and then store it in the fridge.
Just as the kids were heading to bed I remembered the yoghurt and couldn’t wait to have a look at it.  OMG, it worked!  A wonderfully set yoghurt just as I like it and oh the taste, mildly sweet and warm.  I was jumping up and down with excitement, seriously on a high!

Home made yoghurt
The way yoghurt should be!

Home made yoghurt
Yoghurt اللبن الرائب Laban Zabadi
I hope your yoghurt turns out just as nice – let me know in the comments below!  


  1. My Grandmother and my Mum used to make yoghurt as well. They loved making their own. I have recently seen little yoghurt pots in mum's fridge so know she has made some fairly recently. Apart from the starter, I'm not sure what she used to make it though. Will have to ask her next time I talk to her :)

  2. Its look good but you can buy fresh laban up in UAE at Oasis Direct store.