Ancient Yogurt Techniques Inspire Chefs Across the World

Martha Bayne

Legend has it that yogurt was first invented—or more accurately, “stumbled upon”—by nomadic Middle Eastern herders who, after carrying their milk in pouches made in the desert, sat down to drink and discovered the hot milk had turned into curds and whey.

Whether those curds became yogurt or cheese depended on the temperature of the milk and the bacteria present, but the modern technique for both is as simple as the story: heat your...