Recently I have turned to Greek style yogurt as an even better yogurt option. Traditional Greek yogurt is made very thick by straining out the whey so it has more protein than regular yogurt (since I'm pregnant I've been trying to get as much vegetarian protein as I can). We have been buying Greek yogurt for a while but our kitchen is filling up with plastic containers and the cost of a quart of this yogurt is about the same as a gallon of organic milk. One gallon of milk makes four quarts of regular yogurt. When I strain this yogurt, with cheese cloth and a colander, I end up with about half as much thickened yogurt. I've been experimenting with the left over whey adding it to smoothies instead of water or juice and, because it is acidic, I think it might make a good substitute for buttermilk.
When I write or think about homemade food rituals and projects I have to return to my motivation for these practices. Sometimes it seems silly to spend this time making something that I don't have to but I appreciate the kitchen rituals, being actively involved in my food, and facilitating a magical transformation.
If you want to make your own Greek style yogurt, follow these instructions for making yogurt at home. Once the yogurt has fully cooled in the refrigerator, pour it into a colander or strainer lined with two layers of cheese cloth or a clean tea towel. Let the yogurt drain for about two hours or until it reaches your desired thickness, stirring every so often to make sure it strains evenly. You can also make yogurt cheese by straining it until it is as thick as cream cheese and use it accordingly.
If you are interested in trying more kitchen staples from scratch, I have updated my list which you can find on the side bar under Homemade Kitchen.