Once again Alton Brown has inspired me to purchase some new kitchen gizmos (namely a digital probe thermometer) and tinker with things that Sandra Lee would never touch.
I have linked the recipe below. Note that alton uses honey (in order to curb the sour tang) and milk powder (to provide extra protein to create a more solid curd).
My questions for you senior home-yogurt makers:
1. Is your recipe significantly different from Alton's?
2. If I wanted to add vanilla extract (or seeds) to the recipe, when would the proper time be? I would think that the alcohol in the extract could kill the bacteria I need to make the yogurt.
3. If I wanted to use raw milk (which we can purchase in California), will the recipe still work? Or will the extra bacteria in the raw milk eat the yogurt-making bacteria?
4. It is not mentioned in the recipe, but in the TV episode he covers the incubation vessel. Is this necessary? Does it help to cut back on the thickness of the skin that forms on top?
Any other yogurt making suggestions would be most appreciated. I did it the hard way (by babysitting for 7 hours in a gas oven I was constantly adjusting) but alton uses the heating pad method which I will have to try next time.