Last night, while winding down for sleep, I got a hankering to try making homemade Greek yogurt. I looked at various devices for a few minutes online before going to bed—there are several yogurt-making machines with appealing little glass jars.
I'm pretty sure I will want to strain the yogurt to thicken it, so a bunch of little containers probably won't work for me. So, instead of jumping in feet-first and ordering equipment I may not want or need, then waiting for it to arrive, I'm making a test batch with a crock pot while I work from home today. The name of the game is temperature management as far as I can tell and that only requires a good thermometer, a towel, and a gentle way to heat things back up—hence, the crock pot.
I'll let you know how it goes. I have several design projects going at once right now, so I can't afford to give the Yogurt Experiment my full attention. If I screw up, I lose a half gallon of milk and a couple of tablespoons of yogurt to the adventure. If I succeed, I manage to learn something new and squeeze a little extra fun into my day without losing pace on my design calendar.
Come to think of it, I get the learning and the fun whether I succeed or not. Well hey!
Cultures for Health has a fantastic, free PDF on yogurt-making. Sign up for their newsletter (gray box on right side of page) and they'll email you a free copy. I've only had time to skim over it, but I can't imagine this 79-page guide doesn't cover it all, top to bottom, raw milk to soy milk, acidophilus to thermophilus and back again. It looks pretty biblical.