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Yogurt!


melonpan
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melonpan, could be Oligo sugar, which remains very popular here. Even my DH is convinced that it's good for him.

I like the aloe yogurt - it's surprisingly fresh, and not too sweet.

ah yes! oligo sugar! haha. now i feel all better. it was bugging me...

i wonder when and if the aloe yogurt will arrive here. id love to try it!

"Bibimbap shappdy wappdy wap." - Jinmyo
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Speaking of rhubarb and yogurt, Hiromi and I received a small cup of Caspian sea yogurt from one of my Japanese colleagues two or three weeks ago. I've seen that it's quite popular in Japan.

We used what we got as a starter for our own yogurt, and the milk fermented nicely at room temperature. It took a bit longer than we were expecting but became very thick (almost a neba-neba texture), and doesn't seem to have much evidence of whey separation that's common in yogurt.

With one of the batches I made, I claimed most of the yogurt for the purpose of making frozen yogurt. Rhubarb has been looking very nice this season, and I picked up a stash of it and boiled it with sugar, pureed it, and when everything was chilled, I blended the yogurt, the rhubarb puree, and some cream.

Then I put everything into my electric ice cream maker and waited... it turned out very nicely.

Jason Truesdell

Blog: Pursuing My Passions

Take me to your ryokan, please

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the caspia sea yogurt has been a frustrating topic for me.

i bought two packages last year (theyre rather pricey too, $12 per packet for: 3 starter cultures and some packets of collagen. they also sell the collagen at a high price so i think the yogurt is worth almost nothing prolly). gave one packet to my mom gave another to sister and as for me and my three starter cultures? managed to keep a culture going for 3 months. and when that started to go bad, i kept another batch going but it went bad after 2 weeks. am hoarding the last one... anyway, then i went to the stores and i couldnt find it in the stores anymore.

made all sorts of frantic calls (i hated it at first. hated it. it wasnt tangy, and i do love my tangy yogurt but somehow that mild bland flavour got addicting.) to all the local japanese markets.

apparently only one vendor was delivering it and they refused to deliver anymore. not enough sales here.

then two weeks ago, i saw it again. bought up 6 packages. hope it lasts a year. oh. i have to send some to mom too cause she says she loves it. she loves it.

i went again today to the market. all sold out. i hope that they continue to supply l.a. with this stuff.... its great!

i think they need to market it to korean folks too. i am sure that koreans in the la area would buy it up too. wish i had the right connections and marketing capabilities to make it happen. oh well.

"Bibimbap shappdy wappdy wap." - Jinmyo
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The Caspian Sea yogurt had a major boom here a couple years back na dthen sort of disappeared, now with the new general yogurt boom it has been back on most supermarket shelves.

I had it going for a couple months back then, maybe I will give it a go again. I really liked it.

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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the caspia sea yogurt has been a frustrating topic for me.

i bought two packages last year (theyre rather pricey too, $12 per packet for: 3 starter cultures and some packets of collagen.  they also sell the collagen at a high price so i think the yogurt is worth almost nothing prolly).  gave one packet to my mom gave another to sister and as for me and my three starter cultures?  managed to keep a culture going for 3 months.  and when that started to go bad, i kept another batch going but it went bad after 2 weeks.  am hoarding the last one...  anyway, then i went to the stores and i couldnt find it in the stores anymore.

made all sorts of frantic calls (i hated it at first.  hated it.  it wasnt tangy, and i do love my tangy yogurt but somehow that mild bland flavour got addicting.) to all the local japanese markets.

apparently only one vendor was delivering it and they refused to deliver anymore.  not enough sales here.

then two weeks ago, i saw it again.  bought up 6 packages.  hope it lasts a year.  oh.  i have to send some to mom too cause she says she loves it.  she loves it.

i went again today to the market.  all sold out.  i hope that they continue to supply l.a. with this stuff....  its great!

i think they need to market it to korean folks too.  i am sure that koreans in the la area would buy it up too.  wish i had the right connections and marketing capabilities to make it happen.  oh well.

A touching story... Is that yogurt that good?? I've never had it, I had just assumed that it was just another new product that would fade away in a few months.

Slightly off topic, but is there any yogurt purist out there? I do put some sugar in my yogurt, but I can have it without any sugar, too.

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I think many Japanese like the lower acidity of the Caspian yogurt, and I find it doesn't need much, if any, sweetener like honey or jam. Also Japanese might like the texture, which shares some of the viscosity and elasticity of neba-neba foods.

It's also popular in part because, unlike most yogurt cultures, it ferments at a lower temperature, the culture is very active, and it isn't very fussy, so anyone can make it. But I think, like many fermented foods, it requires at least weekly attention, refreshing with new milk; it keeps fermenting a little bit at refrigerator temperatures, and because of the milk, it can still spoil.

Hiromi actually prefers the acidity of ordinary yogurt. I find that I don't put as much jam or other ingredients into the Caspian yogurt as I do with most plain yogurt, because it's milder and I want to taste some of the acidity. I do like that it's very thick and requires no starch or thickeners to stabilize it.

Jason Truesdell

Blog: Pursuing My Passions

Take me to your ryokan, please

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  • 4 months later...

Yogurt is one of the first things I make sure to put in my grocery basket during trips to Japan. I love Japanese yogurt! :wub: I know that there are all different kinds of flavors, but I am referring to the general taste of Meiji Bulgaria (?). Why is it that Japanese yogurt tastes nothing like yogurt in the States? The closest thing I have ever had was an Italian brand yogurt that I got at Trader Joe's. I can't remember the name, but it comes in packs of 3 little glass containers that look like mini vases. I thought that it was strange that it was impossible to find Japanese yogurt in the States and upon asking, I was told that yogurt couldn't be flown overseas because the live cultures would explode at such high elevations. Is that true? :wacko: That seems like a strange argument to me...Could it be that they just don't want to bother with sending over such perishable goods?

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I know nothing about live cultures exploding but count me in as another fan of Japanese yogurt.

I ate almost no yogurt when I lived in the US so my first experiences with it was in Japan. Now on trips back to the US, american yogurt tastes so awful to me I don't buy it except for cooking purposes.

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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I thought that it was strange that it was impossible to find Japanese yogurt in the States and upon asking, I was told that yogurt couldn't be flown overseas because the live cultures would explode at such high elevations.  Is that true?

Absolutely not true. I've been served Japanese yogurt on domestic flights as well as international flights and there were no explosions going on.

Baker of "impaired" cakes...
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oh whoops...so you say "yakult" and koreans say "yo gu ru tu"

same thing, just different names/pronunciations

In Japanese the product/brand name of Yakult is pronounced yakuruto ヤクルト and yogurt is pronounced youguruto ヨーグルト (it is a long yo).

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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I ate almost no yogurt when I lived in the US so my first experiences with it was in Japan. Now on trips back to the US, american yogurt tastes so awful to me I don't buy it except for cooking purposes.

How does Japanese yogurt taste different (and better) than American yog?

Margaret McArthur

"Take it easy, but take it."

Studs Terkel

1912-2008

A sensational tennis blog from freakyfrites

margaretmcarthur.com

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American style yogurt has stabilizers in them, to give them more of a custardy texture, and the flavored varieties have a lot more sugar and flavoring... to the point where they are more like a pudding with yogurt cultures rather than yogurt. It's definitely less tangy.

When I buy yogurt for cooking, I buy Greek style yogurt... the difference between the Greek style yogurt that I buy, and plain Dannon is like the difference between chalk and cheese.

Cheryl

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  • 2 weeks later...
I thought that it was strange that it was impossible to find Japanese yogurt in the States and upon asking, I was told that yogurt couldn't be flown overseas because the live cultures would explode at such high elevations.  Is that true?  :wacko: That seems like a strange argument to me...Could it be that they just don't want to bother with sending over such perishable goods?

Well, I'm glad to hear that the live cultures don't actually explode during the flight over the Pacific! But, the question remains...why no Japanese yogurt in America??? I wonder if the following quotes from melonpan and MomofLittleFoodies (from the candy thread) have anything to do with it. However, I find it hard to believe that all Japanese yogurt is non-pasteurized.

due to regulations, milk based products from japan are not allowed here in america
It's not a Japan-specific thing. The FDA doesn't allow unpastuerized milk products. That's why it is very hard to find a truely authentic camembert cheese in the US, and why the American military base exhcanges in Japan fly in ultra pastuerized milk.

What will I do after I have to go back to the States?!? :sad: I wonder if anybody has ever made Japanese style yogurt at home, and if so, can this be done outside of Japan? Or, is the flavor partly attributable to Japanese cows? I would actually buy myself a yogurt making contraption if I could duplicate the flavor at home!

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I wonder if the following quotes from melonpan and MomofLittleFoodies (from the candy thread) have anything to do with it.  However, I find it hard to believe that all Japanese yogurt is non-pasteurized. 
due to regulations, milk based products from japan are not allowed here in america
It's not a Japan-specific thing. The FDA doesn't allow unpastuerized milk products. That's why it is very hard to find a truely authentic camembert cheese in the US, and why the American military base exhcanges in Japan fly in ultra pastuerized milk.

What will I do after I have to go back to the States?!? :sad: I wonder if anybody has ever made Japanese style yogurt at home, and if so, can this be done outside of Japan? Or, is the flavor partly attributable to Japanese cows? I would actually buy myself a yogurt making contraption if I could duplicate the flavor at home!

I did a little more research and I learned that all yogurt is non-pasteurized because the pasteurization process would kill all of the live cultures. I guess that makes sense! So, thanks MomofLittleFoodies, I suppose that's the reason. :sad: ¡¡Better eat as much Japanese yogurt as I possibly can while I'm here!!! :biggrin:

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How does Japanese yogurt taste different (and better) than American yog?

The texture is definitely different. Unlike a lot of yogurt in the states which, if everted onto a plate, would maintain the exact shape of the yogurt container, Japanese yogurt is much creamier. If you tried to stick a spoon in the container, it would probably fall to the side. Actually, I've never tried this, but I think that it's true! There are 3 grams of fat per 100g serving, which might be higher than some American yogurts, but that is probably what gives it a richer, creamier taste. Also, the taste is just a little bit sweet, but also a tiny bit sour. This particular kind is plain, but even the types that come with fruit aren't nearly as sweet tasting as Yoplait or Dannon. I like the fact that you can adjust the sugar content by yourself because each container comes with it's own little sugar package. Here's a picture of the yogurt currently in my fridge. It has "Bulgaria" written on it in big, bold letters, so I guess that they are emulating the Bulgarian style of yogurt making. This is what one website had to say about Bulgarian yogurt

Answers.com

gallery_31440_3297_86447.jpg

"Bulgarian yoghurt is popular for its specific taste, aroma, and quality and is commonly consumed plain. The qualities are specific to the particular culture strains used in Bulgaria, Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus bacteria. This type of yogurt is often labelled and sold as Greek yoghurt, especially in British and American markets. Bulgarian yoghurt producers are taking steps to legally protect the trademark of Bulgarian yoghurt on the European market and distinguish it from other product types that do not contain live bacteria. Bulgarian yoghurt is often strained by hanging in a cloth for a few hours to reduce water content. The resulting yoghurt is creamier, richer and milder in taste because of increased fat content. Hanging overnight is sometimes employed to make a concentrated yoghurt similar to cream cheese."

I tried Fage Greek yogurt one time, and I didn't think that it tasted like Japanese yogurt at all. It wasn't sweet at all, had a much stronger flavor and was more sour. As I said before, the closest thing I have ever had in the States was the Italian yogurt sold at Trader Joe's. It's called Spega and it comes in really cute glass containers. I heard somebody once say that Japanese yogurt tastes exactly like French yogurt flavored gelato...just in case you can use that as a reference!!! :biggrin:

The quote above mentions that the live bacteria are what give it its special characteristics. This brand has L. bulgaricus 2038, S. thermophilus 1131 and LB 81. Anyone have any American yogurt around to compare??

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The quote above mentions that the live bacteria are what give it its special characteristics.  This brand has L. bulgaricus 2038, S. thermophilus 1131 and LB 81.  Anyone have any American yogurt around to compare??

:biggrin: This is from my favorite "organic", low-fat yogurt call Brown Cow.

Active Cultures: S. Thermophilus, I Bulgaricus, I Acidophilus and Bifidus. No "numbers" following the culture names.

Other additives: pectin and tapioca starch

I'm afraid that if you want to make your own yogurt close to what you're enjoying now, you will need to have your own cow in your backyard :huh: This yogurt is made is pasteurized milk. If you've ever watched the BBC comedy "Chef" there is a hysterical episode about Gareth running around all over England trying to find an unscrupulous dairy farmer that will make him Stilton Cheese from unpasteurized cream.

If you are serious about making your own yogurt, there are places in the US that sell "raw" milk.

http://www.organicpastures.com

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My wife consumes 80% or more of the yogurt we regularly buy. Last night, I asked her which brand she liked the best (of Meiji's Bulgaria, Morinaga's Bifidos (sp?), and the former Yukijirushi's Nature (sp?)). She replied, "Bulgaria". I asked why, she replied, and today I just can't remember exactly what she told me... :sad:

I found this questionnaire survey results:

http://www.imi.ne.jp/blogs/research/2004/07/post_56.html

Meiji's Bulgaria is the most purchased yogurt in Japan.

My wife and I usually buy one of the three brands that is sold at the lowest price for that day.

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I usually eat Bulgaria but a little while ago MEGMILK'S Megumi was on sale and I tried that one. I really liked it. It was creamier than Bulgaria and a touch sweeter. I wish they would put it on sale again because it is just too expensive otherwse.

By "the former Yukijirushi's Nature", I meant MEGMILK's Megumi. Was it that good? I thought it was the same as Nature...

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Meiji's Bulgaria is what we use to make yogurt (that is, every few months we start again with a fresh pack of Bulgaria, not because the culture weakens, but because gradually other bacteria join the party and change the flavor).

I wasn't fond of the original Nature yogurt (way too bland), but I'd be curious to try the Megumi type - haven't yet seen it around here.

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I usually eat Bulgaria but a little while ago MEGMILK'S Megumi was on sale and I tried that one. I really liked it. It was creamier than Bulgaria and a touch sweeter. I wish they would put it on sale again because it is just too expensive otherwse.

By "the former Yukijirushi's Nature", I meant MEGMILK's Megumi. Was it that good? I thought it was the same as Nature...

No it is different tasting than nature (I also found nature bland) and it is quite pricey usually more than Bulgaria. I usually eat it for breakfast with some homemade granola so the creaminess and touch of sweetness is nice. I don't think I would care for it with savory dishes as much.

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"

 

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