Episode 75: Yogurt

Gather round, friends. We have a special treat for you: plain yogurt. Yeah, we said it. This week we climb into a metaphorical vat of probiotic goodness and discuss texture, mix-ins, and made-up yogurt science. Includes a rare Molly-Matthew disagreement on the subject of Greek yogurt. www.spilledmilkpodcast.com

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15 thoughts on “Episode 75: Yogurt

  1. Alex

    My favorite thing to do with non-fat greek yogurt is to mix in honey and cocoa powder and pretend I’m eating chocolate pudding. This is not a breakfast application, but it is pretty tasty.

  2. steve

    I’m a Greek yogurt fan – Fage mostly – but also love Icelandic skyr and was delighted to find some in the US that is as good as the real thing in Iceland. Siggi’s is *really* good, but sadly too expensive for me to have all the time.

  3. Dana

    I’ve been a plain yogurt eater since college days and I as well cannot palate fruited, especially vanilla, yogurt. I try not to buy Stonyfield for other reasons, mainly their corporate ownership and I think Brown Cow is just better. However, I think you guys came down pretty hard on the separated whey ordeal. I tried to google whether separated whey is a sign of poor quality but found little. (I also can’t spend all morning on this. I gotta get to work to make money to buy more yogurt.) I’ve also read that the whey is very high in protein and that it should be stirred back in for better nutrition. Finally, I’ve made my own yogurt a lot and it usually separates. Do you know if the whey separating is actually a reflection on the quality of the yogurt??

    1. mamster Post author

      I don’t think it’s a reflection of quality at all, Dana. It just skeeves me and Molly out. It’s a phobia.

  4. Samantha

    I really enjoyed this podcast. I remember loving Yoplait custard style as a child too. Now I usually eat Strauss plain yogurt. I have tried making my own yogurt, but I think Strauss tastes better. I think the texture of Greek yogurt is weird. Although I like the thickness it is almost to dry in my mouth. Anyway thanks again for another great episode.

  5. Sarah

    I really like peanut butter stirred into my plain yogurt. Both crunchy and creamy are delish, but I admit I prefer “non-natural” peanut butter, such as Jif, only because it mixes better with the yogurt. I have tried natural peanut butter, and it works too, but for me the sweetness and texture of “non-natural” varieties make my peanut butter yogurt tastier.

  6. martinigirl

    Since you all are Seattleites, I’m wondering if you’ve ever had either Grace Harbor (from Custer, WA) or Silver Springs (Lynden I think) yogurt? Both are pretty terrific, but the Silver Springs won national best yogurt in the Cheesemakers competition. Even here in Bellingham it sells out pretty quickly. I love the stuff for the rich flavor, and it’s not quite as thick as Fage (my fallback when the Food Co-op is out).
    I eat it with Molly’s Olive Oil Maple Granola that I make often (but I substitute local hazelnuts for the pecans).

  7. Renee

    My absolute favorite is Trader Joe’s Organic European-style whole milk plain yogurt. I started eating this when I bought it to use for baby food and I have never turned back to other yogurts. What I love about it is that it is very smooth and creamy, never dry like Greek yogurt, and I really love how runny it is. I use this yogurt for all kinds of applications – with granola, with fresh fruit, used in baking, with spicy Indian food, etc. It’s just perfect :-)

  8. heartlandroad

    Weird about the whey separating back out – I don’t find it does that, or at least not quickly. Leave it a couple of days and if it’s live it’ll get to culturing, which can make the whey separate again.

    In answer to someone else, whey separation or lack of it isn’t a reflection on quality (except that you might not like it). It depends on a lot of things like type of milk, strain of cultures, culturing temp and time.

    Preventing it doesn’t take some weird spacey process, but it may have trade offs. I make youghurt by culturing overnight in the oven with the light on – I get perfect smooth white yoghurt with no whey separation, but the texture is not the best. I think a higher culturing temp gives better texture but more whey. There may be more to it, though. Yoghurt is helluva complicated, there are lots of factors involved.

    Re the yog with non-fat dried milk in it, that’s a common way of thickening yoghurt without adding fat. It increases the amount of milk protein so it cultures thicker. Lots of hobby yoghurt makers do that. I’ve never fancied it, as dried milk can have a strong flavour. I love it in halva where it’s drowned in sugar, but not in yoghurt.

  9. mia

    I guess I’m in the yogurt minority, but I really like a yogurt with super thick consistency. So I, um, purposely make a deep well in my greek style yogurt. The dreaded whey collects, so I pour it out and am left with a nice thick yogurt. I’m afraid my yogurt eating habits will make Molly and Matthew cringe…

  10. Andrea

    Having lived on both the East and West Coasts as well as the Midwest, I have to say that dairy in general has a different flavor in New England, no idea why though. That said, Stonyfield yogurt is still rather odd–a bit chemically, chalky thing going on.

  11. ela jean

    Trader Joe’s buys most of their stuff regionally, including their yogurt, but as far as I know, the whole west coast carries their Organic “European Style,” which is in fact, Strauss. And it’s simple and beautiful.

    And I’m with Molly on the greek yogurt thing. It’s chalky and – is it possible for texture to overwhelm flavor? Funny, though, it was the greek variety that piqued my interest in yogurt after a life-time of cursing it’s gelatinous, self-separating, fruit-on-the-bottom, foil-topped ways.

  12. JackieD

    My two cents:

    The whey has never bothered me. Just pour it off…You guys are weird.

    I like to make my own “fruited” yogurt by stirring a few T. jam (apricot and blueberry (less sweet)) into plain or vanilla yogurt.

    Greek yogurt has the a similar mouthfeel to me as goat cheese.

  13. Cheryl in France

    Cracking up over the whey! Here in France, there are 2 choices- regular yog with whey (you either pour it off or stir like crazy) and ‘yaourt brasse’ which is yogurt that has been pre-mixed (beaten, really) and doesn’t separate. Yogurt for all! It’s insane how big the yogurt aisles are here- think the refrigerated equivalent of the cereal aisle…

    and as a total aside, yogurt is often eaten here as a cheese course (most often ‘nature’-unflavored- but sprinkled with sugar) or dessert. To be truly French, one MUST lick the foil lid after peeling it back, lol!

  14. bubbles

    I love the full fat plain greek yogurt! Fage is very good, but I just discovered Cabot’s and it is even creamier!
    I have also started stirring about a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil into my serving right before eating to increase the fat content, it emulsifies so you can’t see it, and then when I stir a tiny bit of tart cherry juice concentrate or a little jam into it, you can’t tell at all and it is DELICIOUS.

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