RTF: Making culture mainstream

Upon arrival in New York City there was an overwhelming amount of places to dine at, yet I wasn’t sure where in the world to start. My visit in the Big Apple was short lived but wildly successful. My first morning in the city riding one of the many yellow taxis I scrolled through the Twitter sphere. Within minutes I was reading New York Time’s most recent post in its Diner’s Journal, Two Fresh Approaches to Yogurt.

While many of us tend to know the healthy benefits that are naturally found in plain and greek yogurts it is slowly becoming a trend to enjoy the thick and sometimes quiet sour substance. Until now there are only few places that have capitalized on selling yogurt fresh and by order, nature’s true secret. As a foodie that digs the cool taste of my morning greek treat I had yet to see it sold anywhere besides rows of it in the dairy aisle of a grocery store – until now.

The Diner’s Journal was covering The Yogurt Culture Company along with a similar food establishment and their novel approach to selling fresh yogurt with an endless supply of pure, wholesome toppings.

The Yogurt Culture Company is doing exactly what their name says, creating a culture around yogurt. A fun pun is that this stuff is actually also packed with beneficial cultures and probiotics that keep your insides pleased and clean. Any of the employees will happily explain the natural benefits of the yogurt and how the cultures are one of the nine amino acids our bodies need to survive. The probiotics and natural cultures also help aid digestion, and in a delicious way. There are also a variety of pamphlets available throughout the store offering much more information, including their philosophies. Their approach is not only to sell the stuff but actually educate their customers and show them how yogurt can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch or as a sweet snack depending on what’s on top.

    

Their plain yogurt is processed through Dannon in White Plains, New York and shipped to The Yogurt Culture Company store front. While their greek yogurt stems from the Battenkill Valley Creamery in Salem, New York allowing them to support other local New York food establishments. Where they source the yogurt goes along with one of their philosophies, to provide the highest quality of all-natural dairy. Battenkill Valley Creamery is over 100 years old as well as being family owned, making wholesome, sustainable milk their life long priority. Their cows are hormone free and allow The Yogurt Culture Company to offer a clean product.

Once in the store the customer has a variety of toppings to add on. The most impressive are the fruit purees that are made with 100% fruit that is hand-churned by a local New York fruit producer and naturally sweetened. Along with the fresh fruits, the Yogurt Culture Company is attempting to offer an experience to their customers that will help make yogurt shops a part of mainstream food establishments.

Beyond the high quality yogurt, the company actually upholds a second mission geared toward the business’s carbon footprint. All of the people behind The Yogurt Culture Company believe in having a company that is sustainable and environmentally conscious. All of the store materials as well as their cutlery is made from 100% corn-based plastics, 100% recycled fiber. The Forest Stewardship Council has certified much of their wooden utensils while their wooden counters come from reclaimed wood. All of the above gives a small glimpse at the kind of decisions being made at The Yogurt Culture Company.

Beyond the fresh yogurt and outstanding company philosophies, the menu extends to frozen yogurt and the opportunity to make parfaits or smoothies. The rustic inspired shop also offers daily baked pastries, salads and sandwiches all made with yogurt as a key ingredient.

All hail the healthy cultures.

Amy Verhey

Summer 2012 Food Warrior

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My go-to Greek Yogurt.

My initial intention when purchasing a bunch of pears was a healthy one and would allow me to have some fresh fruit to munch on. Although with all this crazy heat in Madison nearly twenty-four hours later they were brown and on their way to molding, so it was time to get creative, and fast!!

I had just finished din din and was craving something that would satisfy my sweet tooth. I sliced off all the bruised parts, which unfortunately was the majority for some. However, I then scoured my cupboards and drizzled honey over while sprinkling on brown sugar and cinnamon. Next up was time to throw it in the oven and wait to see what the finish product would be. About twenty minutes later I had a gooey warm poached style pear to top on whatever I pleased. Unfortunately whatever I pleased turned into whatever I had, Chobani Greek yogurt. Lately yogurt has been my go-to ingredient and strikingly it was amazing because the tartness of the yogurt complimented the sweetness of the pears making me craving more, more, more!

Bon appetit and when it’s brown, don’t throw it down.

Going Greek.

 

Summer heat always leaves me only wanting cool refreshing treats which recently has left me craving yogurt. In order to restore my tummy after the extremely adventurous foods I sampled in China I have been leaning towards Greek Yogurt which is full of live cultures and probiotics. Both of these help restore the bodies digestion system and greek yogurt also has high amounts of protein, healthy perfection. However, this does not come cheap and many are flavored which I am not wild about. I have discovered the perfect solution, farmer’s markets. Depending on what county you reside in there is sure to be a farmer’s market close by and if you are lucky enough you can find home made greek yogurt, score!!

I stumbled upon this in the Sheboygan County Farmer’s Market, hosting only about fifteen to twenty stalls. I choose to add fresh strawberries, blueberries or just honey for some extra sugar. This tastes better and is waaaay healthier than the added flavors and sugars found in most yogurts. It is also really good with granola or on the go for a full meal, if your bowl is big enough! Maybe next summer I can take my greek yogurt to the shores of lovely Greece… #dreambig.

Bon appetit.