More Good News About Yogurt
Greek yogurt is deliciously thick and smooth. For centuries the Greeks have been making a no-stir treat called yiaourti by straining out the liquid whey that pools on top of yogurt.
The principle difference in creating Greek yogurt is that after the milk is heated and cultured, it is allowed to sit in muslin or cheesecloth bags, so that the whey filters out of the yogurt. You’ll note that some yogurts have an almost runny texture, or have liquid on the top when you open them. Greek yogurts don’t have this liquid because of the straining process.
The results are an overall concentration of yogurt with twice as much protein and less sodium than regular yogurt.
And, the good news, it has less carbohydrates and therefore less lactose. Greek yogurt is great for cooking as it hold up better to heat and can be substituted for sour cream, milk, mayonnaise and even creme fraiche in recipes.
Into the bowl of a food processor add juice of 1 lemon, 1 garlic clove, 2 seeded and diced cucumbers, 1 tablespoon fresh dill and ground black pepper and sea salt to taste.
Process until well combined. Then stir in 3 cups of plain Greek yogurt. Tzatziki is great with meats such as salmon, lamb and chicken.
Soy yogurt is made by combining soy milk with vegan bacterial strains. It may have a slight beany taste but it lacks lactose so people who are lactose intolerant can enjoy this yogurt. Soy yogurt is low in saturated fat and contains energy boosting iron. It also contains phytoestrogens, estrogen-like compounds that may improve bone health will keeping cholesterol levels in check. When possible choose low sugar brands as well as certified organic, which uses nongenetically modified soybeans.
Soy Yogurt Parfait
For a great snack, place a scoop of soy yogurt in the bottom of a tall glass and top with granola and berries. Repeat the layers and top with a drizzle of pure maple syrup or honey.
Kefir is originally from the Caucasian mountain region of Russia. It is made by inoculating milk with kefir grains, which are a mixture of yeast and bacteria. Kefir has a unique type of beneficial bacteria cultures that break down the sugars in milk, making it possible for those who are lactose intolerant to be able to enjoy this unusual beverage. Studies have found that Kefir may halt the spread of breast cancer cells and as well has the ability to reduce inflammation, allergies, cholesterol, blood pressure and diarrhea. The Russians think so highly of Kefir that they dole out daily rations in hospitals. One other benefit that I have found personally, is that it is a good remedy for digestive issues. I have my Kefir every morning first thing!
Add 1 cup of Kefir to a blender along with 1 banana, 1 cup orange juice, 1/2 cup frozen berries and 1 tablespoon each honey and almond butter. Blend until smooth. Enjoy!
Cookbooks on Yogurt
It might have a slight goaty taste, however, a good smooth goat yogurt should not taste much different than cow's milk yogurt. The fermentation of goat yogurt has been found to produce compounds that may help lower blood pressure and it is easier to digest too.
Mash 2 avocados in a bowl and add 1 cup goat yogurt, 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder, 1/2 finely chopped jalapeno (more if you like it hot), 1 chopped garlic clove, juice from 1/2 lime, a handful of cilantro and salt to taste. Mix until desired consistency. Enjoy with pita chips or vegetables.
Sheep's milk has more solids than cow or goat milk which makes for a rich and thick yogurt. It is easier to tolerate for those who have sensitivities to cow or goat yogurts. Sheep yogurt has more protein, calcium and B vitamins as well as magnesium. Although Sheep's milk has more fat it contains the heart-healthy unsaturated fats which are less damaging to your heart and waist line. The best part of eating sheep's yogurt is less additives which allows for the natural flavors and textures to come through. You will pay a little more for sheep yogurt because sheeps tend to give less milk and is more labor intensive.
Mix together 1 cup plain sheep yogurt with 1 teaspoon orange zest, juice from 1/2 lime, 1/2 tablespoon curry powder, 1/8 tablespoon cayenne powder, a 1 tablespoon honey. When poured over your favorite fish it will bring out the flavor!
Raw Vegan Yogurt
Meat of three young Thai coconuts
½ tsp lemon juice
Place coconut meat and lemon in a blender or food processor (a Vitamix or high speed blender, is ideal). Blend with as little water as possible, scraping the bowl frequently to get a thick texture. Once it becomes creamy with a rich consistency you can add some flavoring such as fresh vanilla or you can add berries. Continue blending until the mix is as smooth as you would like your yogurt to be.