Sunday, May 18, 2008

Home Pasteurization

Our main milk supply comes fresh from the cow. These days I have been pasteurizing it to kill any bacteria. Most people don't generally have a problem drinking raw milk unless they have a compromised immune system. Then, contracting Listeriosis could be problem. Listeria monocytogenes is a bacteria found in soil and water. It can be in a variety of raw foods as well as in processed foods and foods made from unpasteurized milk. My husband and I have used raw milk without any problems, but, to be on the safe side and for the benefit of anyone who may be drinking a glass of milk from my refrigerator, I pasteurize our fresh milk.

To begin, I make sure I have clean jars ready for the finished product. I use quart canning jars because they are easy to handle from the fridge as opposed to one big gallon jug. Clean lids, a funnel, ladle and thermometer are essential items as well as a double boiler system.
*note-use stainless steel pan for the milk.

I set up a double boiler system with two very large pans, then the milk into top pan, turn the heat on high and stir to distribute heat and prevent any scalding, measuring temp often. You want to heat the milk to 161 degrees and maintain that for about 15 seconds.

Once the milk has reached 161 throughout, remove it from heat and immediately cool it down. I accomplish this by setting the entire pan into my kitchen sink and adding ice cubes and cold tap water to surround the pan. Then I stir, checking temp until the milk has cooled to at least 98 degrees or less. This takes about 10 minutes. (Some say cool to 40, but I allow the fridge to finish the job.)

Once cooled, I ladle into clean jars and place into refrigerator immediately to further the cooling process.

13 comments:

  1. Wow - I had no idea. Thanks for posting this, it's really neat. I thought that home pasteurizing raw milk would involve some complicated process. This is excellent. I wonder if all types of milk (cow, goat, etc) would require the same temp, 161F?

    ReplyDelete
  2. I never pasteurized when we had our cow, earthheart, but perhaps I should have. It looks easy enough. How does it affect the cream? Do you skim it to make butter?

    I sure miss real milk. I'd like to find someone willing to sell a gallon or so a week, but so far no luck.

    ReplyDelete
  3. city mouse, pasteurizing goat milk would be no different. You can pasteurize at a lower temp, but it takes a longer cooking time. I prefer the quicker method.

    granny sue, I haven't tried making butter from the pasteurized milk. We like the milk with the cream still in it. I have noticed that after pasteurization there doesn't seem to be as heavy a separation, although we still have to shake it up before drinking. So good!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Wow - I'm totally impressed. We used to help the farmer with milking the cows (via machine) when we were little - we loved going there ....

    ReplyDelete
  5. My husband and I are considering raising nubian goats. I was told that pasteurization of goat's milk and cow's milk is the same...your blog post was very helpful. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I just began learning about homesteading. It seems like the perfect way to live life! Thanks for the info about milk.

    ReplyDelete
  7. If you just boil the milk, would that not be good enough, or what is the difference?

    ReplyDelete
  8. Although canning milk in a water bath canner is not recommended (low-acid food), I still think it would be fine to pasteurize milk by the quart in a water bath canner. This would allow more rapid and even heating of the milk, since it would be in several quart (or pint) jars instead of in one big double boiler pan. You could also cool it more rapidly and avoid having to handle the milk again after it's pasteurized. I also think you could put canning lids on top after heating and screw them down before cooling so that a vacuum seal is created. This might slow the cooling too much though. Of course, you could not store the milk on the shelf or treat it like a canned food, but I like the idea of having a sealed lid. Does anyone have any input on these ideas?

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thanks for the info! I am switching my 14 month old son from formula to raw milk and wanted to protect him from any bad bacteria since we are not milking the cow ourselves. Have a great day!

    ReplyDelete
  10. i am not doughtinG the efects of your pasteuration . but just wondering what the source of your info for this is. does the fda recomend the use of double boiler and the time posted ? or who does that has studied the efecTS OF the pasteuration in that way. only asking because i take medications that lower my imune system and want to get it right the first time and home pasteurizing units can be costly. ty and luv your web page.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. it's been so long i can't honestly remember my info source. not sure what the fda recommend but i'm sure you could research that and i'd certainly suggest doing so with a compromised immune system. good luck and thanks!

      Delete
  11. thanks for the information. my husband and i are trying very hard to get away from corporate farm food. i knew it was easy and that i could do it. i just needed the temps and times. thanks again from a ohio girl now living in the country. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you're welcome! glad it helps. from an ohio girl formerly living in the country. :)

      Delete

I sure appreciate your taking the time to share your thoughts. I may not always have time to respond or acknowledge them but I do read them all and highly value your presence here.

ShareThis