Fermented Milk Products from All Over the World. Ymer (Denmark)
Prepared and widely enjoyed in Denmark, ymer is a fermented milk product with a fat content of 3.5%. No one knows when ymer was prepared for the first time, but it is known at a larger scale since the 1930s. This product needs whole milk as a base, to which bacteriological cultures are added. Lactococcus lactis subsp. Lactis biovar diacetylactis and Leu. mesenteroides subsp. cremoris are used for the fermentation process that turns milk into ymer. For the making of ymer, the milk is skimmed and it is heated at temperatures of 90 to 95 degrees Celsius, for approximately 3 minutes. Then it is cooled to temperatures that vary between 19 and 23 degree Celsius. When a temperature in this range is reached, the starter culture is introduced in the milk, starting the fermentation process that lasts between 16 and 18 hours. The final product should have a pH of 4.5. Once the product coagulated, it is cut and heated in an indirect manner in a tank, until it reaches 45 degrees Celsius, for approximately 2 hours. This will make the liquid part of the product to be separated, so about 50% if the initial quantity of the product is removed in the form of whey. Finally, the cream is added and blended with the remaining product at temperatures of 35 to 45 degrees Celsius. This explains the thick consistency and creaminess of the ymer.
Thus, having its whey drained, ymer contains a higher degree of solids in its composition, in comparison with other fermented milk products, which includes a higher content of proteins. But, at the same time, the fat content remains no larger than 3.5%, due to the fact that the milk was skimmed as a first step of the production process. In Denmark, ymer is not just an appreciated breakfast option, as it is also served as a dessert, as a dressing for various recipes, and even as an ingredient when cooking.