“Some old-fashioned things like fresh air and sunshine are hard to beat. In our mad rush for progress and modern improvements let's be sure we take along with us all the old-fashioned things worth while.” Laura Ingalls Wilder

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I Love, Love Kefir

Last year I swapped some buttermilk culture for some kefir culture with a neighbor.  Kefir is a funny (as in unusual) culture.  In its raw state it resembles crumbled up cauliflower .. only tasting it one finds it to be a bit rubbery (chewy) and tangy (fermented).  By adding milk and letting the kefir 'grains' sit out for about 24 hours unrefrigerated, a thick-yoghurty-rich-fermented milk product is produced.  It will keep for several weeks as is .. but when you want to try some of its yummy-ness, just strain off the liquid from the grains through a little plastic strainer and enjoy.

I use my kefir to make healthy fruit smoothies for breakfast.

Here is a site that gives the history and health benefits .. along with nutritional information about  KEFIR.  If you are new to this probiotic milk product, Cultures of Health can get you started with your initial purchase of kefir grains.  This product is not only healthy .. but actually extends the shelf/fridge life of milk .. it keeps it from going bad for quite a long period.  The grains are used over and over.  They even multiply .. so there is the opportunity to share some with a friend. 

Directions for making kefir from grains:  Take the grains (two tablespoons or so for a pint of milk), put in a clean jar.. pour milk over .. place a paper coffee filter over the top and fasten with a rubber band.  Let sit out for about 24 hours.  Replace paper coffee filter with screw type lid and place in the refrigerator.  When ready to use, strain the grains using a plastic strainer .. rinse the grains in cold water .. place them into another clean pint size jar and fill with milk to begin the process again.  It's that easy. 

Fruit Smoothie:

2 cups strained kefir
1 cup frozen berries
1 banana
1 Tablespoon sugar  .. to taste (optional)

Mix in the blender .. Serves about 3-4

How to make milk kefir .. video


meemsnyc said...

Oh wow, this is so interesting!!

Mr. H. said...

Wow, your grains have grown quite a bit. We love those smoothies too.:)

The Professor's Wife said...

I didn't know making kefir was that easy - I will have to try it!

Mrs. Mac said...

Mr. H .. Yes, they have grown quite a bit (and I thank you for the grains last year).(I was reading on-line that you could use some milk kefir grains and 'retrain' (not sure if that's the right word;) but switch their use to making water kefir to turn into some fruity drinks. Have you ever tried doing this?

Laurie said...

I began making my own kefir just a few weeks ago. So easy, and good. The grains sure are prolific things! I read your comment on Rhonda's blog about roasting coffee. I may have to check that out.

Mrs. Mac said...

Laurie .. thanks for stopping by. Just yesterday I roasted my first batch of coffee beans .. it was a kick! And I'm hooked on the process! Blog post to follow soon :)

Anonymous said...

I remember my mother making kefir from kefir grains. That was some 25 year ago. I loved it. I should probalby find some grains and make my own kefir.

Corner Gardener Sue said...

I remember having something with kefir in it when I was in my 20s, and a vegetarian. I don't remember if I grew it or not. I do remember making our yogurt and bread. I also kept some sour dough going for a number of years. I'd like to get that going again. As for the kefir, I am intrigued, but don't know if I'll get to it before I retire.

I enjoyed your post!