Want to impress your friends with slick looking jars of ready-to-eat yogurt in individual single-serving containers? Want to save time by having the fruit and sweetener already in the jar, layered and ready for the mixing when YOUR time is right? I have found a simple method to have yogurt ready for my family’s lunches, and at any point in the week all one has to do is grab a jar from the fridge and go!
There is actually another reason, besides convenience, for culturing in individual jars. As with any live culture, you expect variances in your end product since you do not have the controlled environment one has from a commercial retailer/producer. I was having issues with the “presentation” of my Matsoni yogurt.
In my personal experience, when culturing a mesophilic culture (it cultures at room-temperature without requiring a yogurt maker or electricity), I find that when I use raw milk especially, the yogurt looks perfectly smooth and thick when complete. However, when it comes time to scoop out what we want individually to plop into a bowl or cup, the yogurt becomes a bit runnier than what we are traditionally used to. Although it is absolutely delicious, it isn’t pleasing to the eye. I fixed this by skipping an extra “handling” step…I culture in individual jars so the yogurt looks pretty and untouched.