Before I started on GAPS I ate yogurt but not because I loved or craved it. I ate it more out of convenience – something relatively healthy plus quick to eat – and my favorite was FAGE (pronounced “fa-yeh”). It is thick and delicious. Of course now I probably wouldn’t eat it since I would want to avoid pasteurized milk.
Yogurt is allowed on GAPS, but I do not tolerate dairy products well. Respiratory symptoms return when I have attempted to reintroduce. Since we no longer have our dairy goats and getting raw milk would be a challenge, I have just decided to stay off dairy for the time being. Dr. Datis Kharrazian also suggests that dairy should be avoided for those who have the autoimmune disease Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis:
Many clinicians find removing casein, the protein molecule in all forms of dairy, is also integral to thyroid health. There is not as much research on casein intolerance as there is on gluten intolerance, however anecdotal evidence strongly suggests a diet that is not only gluten-free but also dairy-free promises the best results in managing Hashimoto’s. (p. 32). Morgan James Publishing. Kindle Edition.
And Dr. Ben Lynch also suggests a dairy-free diet if you have the MTHFR genetic mutation, although in my interview with Dr. Lynch he did suggest “… that raw milk should come from cows that are A2, or raw goat milk, and camel milk is also A2.”
Since I have both the genetic mutation and Hashimoto’s antibodies, it is probably best that I stay off dairy products.
I’ve been missing yogurt though, and I have been slacking on getting plenty of probiotic foods in my diet. I bought a bottle of non-dairy yogurt starter in April 2011 and have not used very much of it. The site says you can freeze the product for up to one year, but I have had mine refrigerated and then frozen for two years. The good news is it is still making great yogurt for me!
It has been such a treat to have yogurt again!
I have made several batches and as is common with yogurt the longer it cultures the more sour. I cultured one batch 15 hours and it still had a sweet taste to it, while the 24 hour batch is much more sour and hardly sweet at all. It is delicious and I have been limiting myself to one cup a day.
I recently got a new yogurt maker through a Groupon deal and I happened to have $20 in Groupon credits, so I was able to get my new yogurt maker for only $5. I have another yogurt maker that makes one quart at a time, but I wanted to try the little jars method to see how that would work out for me.
I searched for a recipe that I could use, and found that Cultures for Health has a coconut milk yogurt recipe on their site.They have some suggested variations and this is how I made my coconut milk yogurt:
- 2 cans Natural Value Organic Coconut Milk, 13.5-Ounce Cans (Pack of 12) (this is an Amazon associates link*)
- 2 teaspoons to 2 tablespoons of Bernard Jensen Gelatin (this is an Amazon associates link*)
- 1/8 teaspoon GI ProStart(this is an Amazon associates link*)
- Place coconut milk in a pan and heat until warm enough that the milk is smooth. Natural Value has no guar gum or preservatives and it is pretty clumpy straight from the can. This one that I linked to is also organic, and in a BPA-free can. I link to Amazon so you can see what kind I use, but I order from Azure Standard for a better price.
- In a small bowl add 1/2 cup of the warm coconut milk and 2 teaspoons to 2 tablespoons of powdered gelatin. I linked to the brand I use, but it in capsule form. My bottle is powder, no capsules.
- Mix well.
- In a small bowl place 1/8 teaspoon yogurt starter and a teaspoon of coconut milk.
- Mix well. I use the back of the spoon to mash and mix as the starter clumps.
- Mix gelatin, yogurt starter and coconut milk together in a bowl.
- Separate into individual jars, or place in your quart yogurt maker.
- Once the mixture is heated after a few hours, I stir to make sure everything is mixed together well.
- Let the yogurt culture from 15 to 24 hours.
- Remove from the yogurt maker and stir before placing in the refrigerator. It will separate with thicker yogurt at the top and water at the bottom. Mix while it is still warm and it will hold together once refrigerated.
- For the super thick yogurt I blended it with my hand mixer so that it would have a creamy texture.
If you use 2 teaspoons, it will be fairly thin, while with two tablespoons it will be super thick.
For the photo, I garnished the super thick yogurt with Whole Foods brand 365 Everyday Value Freeze Dried Tropical Fruit Blend which contains mango, banana, strawberry and pineapple.
Yogurt makers I have used:
I use a yogurt maker that I bought at least two decades ago and looks similar to this one (clicking on the image takes you to the product; this is my Amazon affiliate link). I like making one quart in the same container.
This is the yogurt maker I got through Groupon, the brand name is Dash(clicking on the image takes you to the product; this is my Amazon affiliate link). Sometimes I’ll use this product but I tend to lose either jars or lids so I like the quart container better.
I would love to hear from you in the comments on whether you have tried coconut milk yogurt, or if you are planning to try it.
*In the recipe ingredients I link to Amazon Associates. If you purchase any of those items using my link, I will earn a small percentage which is a referral fee for sending you to Amazon. I am also an affiliate for Cultures for Health and earn a small percentage if you order from them using my link. Affiliate income helps to pay for my web hosting, domain registration and other costs of blogging.