Yoghurt is made by introducing specific bacteria strains into milk, which is subsequently fermented under controlled temperatures and environmental conditions (inside a bioreactor), especially in industrial production. The bacteria ingest natural milk sugars and release lactic acid as a waste product. The increased acidity causes milk proteins to tangle into a solid mass (curd) in a process called denaturation.
Varieties of yogurt
- Strained yogurts, which include Greek Yoghurt (yiaourti), Dahi and Bulgarian Yoghurt are types of yogurt which are strained through a cloth or paper filter, traditionally made of muslin, to remove the whey, giving a much thicker consistency, and a distinctive, slightly tangy taste. Some types are boiled in open vats first, so that the liquid content is reduced. The popular East Indian dessert, Mishti Dahi, is a variation of traditional Dahi, offers a thicker, more custard-like consistency, and is usually sweeter than western yogurts.
- Dadiah, or Dadih, is a traditional West Sumatran yogurt made from water buffalo milk. It is fermented in bamboo tubes.
- Laban (Lebanese recipes). Where laban is called for in Lebanese recipes a good UK substitute would be natural yogurt. In its country of origin, laban is buttermilk soured with laban culture, similar to our yogurt culture.
- Labneh yogurt of Lebanon is a thickened yogurt used for sandwiches. Olive oil, cucumber slices, olives, and various green herbs may be added. It can be thickened further and rolled into balls, preserved in olive oil, and fermented for a few more weeks. It is sometimes used with onions, meat, and nuts as a stuffing for a variety of Lebanese pies or Kibbeh balls.
- Tarator/cacık is a popular cold soup made from yogurt, popular during summertime in Bulgaria, Macedonia, and Turkey. It is made with Ayran, cucumbers, dill, salt, olive oil, and optionally garlic and ground walnuts in Bulgaria, and generally without walnuts in Turkey.
- Rahmjoghurt, a creamy yogurt with much higher milk fat content (10%) than most yogurts offered in English speaking countries (Rahm is German for cream), is available in Germany and other countries.
- Caspian Sea Yoghurt is believed to have been introduced into Japan in 1986 by researchers returning from a trip to the Caucasus region in Georgia. This variety, called Matsoni, is started with Lactococcus lactis subsp. cremoris and Acetobacter orientalis species and has a unique, viscous, honey-like texture. It is milder in taste than other varieties of yogurts. Ideally, Caspian Sea yogurt is made at home because it requires neither special equipment nor unobtainable culture. It can be made at room temperature (20–30°C) in 10 to 15 hours. In Japan, freeze dried starter cultures are sold in department stores and online, although many people obtain starter cultures from friends.
- Jameed is yogurt which is salted and dried to preserve it. It is popular in Palestine and Jordan.
Probiotics are live microorganisms thought to be healthy for the host organism. ( Live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host ).
Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and bifidobacteria are the most common types of microbes used as probiotics; but certain yeasts and bacilli may also be helpful. Probiotics are commonly consumed as part of fermented foods with specially added active live cultures; such as in yogurt, soy yogurt, or as dietary supplements.
If a recipe calls for probiotic yogurt, look for natural , bio or probiotic labels.
Wikipedia has a very detailed article on probiotics if you need more information.
- Ayran is a yogurt-based, salty drink popular in Turkey, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. It is made by mixing yogurt with water and adding salt. The same drink is known as tan in Armenia, "Laban Ayran" in Syria and Lebanon, "Shenina" in Jordan, "Moru" in South India, and "Laban Arbil" in Iraq. A similar drink, doogh, is popular in the Middle East between Lebanon and Afghanistan; it differs from ayran by the addition of herbs, usually mint, and is carbonated, usually with seltzer water. In the United States, yogurt-based beverages are often marketed under names like "yogurt smoothie" or "drinkable yogurt". They are also popular in Ecuador where the primary form of yogurt is "bebida de yogurt", which literally means drink of yogurt.
- Lassi is a yogurt-based beverage originally from the Indian subcontinent that is usually slightly salty or sweet. Much like a smoothie, the sweet version is typically flavoured with coconut, rosewater, lemon, mango or other fruit juice. Salty lassi is usually flavoured with ground, roasted cumin and chili peppers.
- Yop a fruity French yogurt coming from the Yoplait Dairy Company, is popular in France, Canada and the UK.
- Kefir is a fermented milk drink originating in the Caucasus. A related Central Asian Turco-Mongolian drink made from mare's milk is called kumis, or airag in Mongolia. Some American dairies have offered a drink called "kefir" for many years with fruit flavours but without carbonation or alcohol. As of 2002, names like "drinkable yogurt" and "yogurt smoothie" have been introduced.
How much does one cup of yogurt weigh?
Estimated US cup to weight equivalents:
Every ingredient has a cups to ounces or grams conversion table. Search for the ingredient, cup to weight conversions are at the end of each ingredient page.
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