Place A Chili Pepper Stem Into Milk For A Batch Of DIY Yogurt

If you're prone to growing your own produce or making things from scratch, then you know the value of saving things for later use that could otherwise be regarded as "trash." Whether that's reserving veggie scraps to make a broth or keeping green onion stalks to produce more of the aromatic, everything can be reused. The next time you chop up chili peppers, save the stems to make yogurt.

Together, chili peppers and milk sound like an odd pairing. The latter is what you drink when you eat too much of the former. However, when combined, they can make a delicious batch of yogurt. It turns out that chili stems naturally contain a bacteria that is used to make yogurt, allowing it to ferment milk into the creamy treat. If you want to make some homemade yogurt and don't have a yogurt starter, chili pepper stems work in a pinch.

Making homemade yogurt is easy — once you heat whole milk in a pot, let it cool down to about 105 F. Pour the milk into jars and drop a few chili pepper stems into each of them before covering the jars. If you have an incubator, leave them there for eight hours. If not, place the jars in the oven at 120 F. Afterwards, you can remove the stems and place the yogurt in the refrigerator, where it should last for two weeks.

Will the yogurt taste like chili peppers?

Unless you use an excessive amount of chili pepper stems, the yogurt should taste fresh and tangy, just like homemade yogurt is supposed to. In fact, the stems might actually make it come across as slightly less sour than usual. If it does end up tasting like pepper-infused yogurt, don't fret — it can still be put to use. You can marinate a cut of meat in yogurt to tenderize it. Mix the yogurt with herbs and spices before slathering it onto poultry, fish, or assorted meats. When combined with olive oil, paprika, coriander, cloves, and Kashmiri chili powder, homemade yogurt makes spicy, tender baked tandoori cod.

The practice of using chili peppers to make yogurt is done in India, so it makes sense to eat homemade yogurt with Indian cuisine. Place a dollop of yogurt on spicy aloo curry or masala dosa to tame the spice if the heat is too much. It can also be used as a substitute for heavy cream. Use it on its own for a healthier alternative or mix it with butter for the same rich, creamy texture.