Water Kefir

Month #1

“Fermented products such as kefir are considered functional foods because they offer enzymes, pre-digested nutrients, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, calories/energy and billions of probiotics.” – Yemoos.com

Here are my top 3 reasons adding this new kitchen pet to my pantry:

  1. Water Kefir is not as sensitive to drastic changes in temperature as kombucha. Plus it is higher in probiotics than kombucha.
  2. I no longer drink beer, liquor or wine and this is a great substitute.
  3. My dog died and I need a new friend.

Did I mention it’s super fast, easy and cheap? Water Kefir only take two days to ferment as opposed to 2-3 weeks for kombucha. Because it ferments so fast it is not as sensitive to changes in temperature. I live in an unheated trailer in the summer months but nights still get down into the 30s sometimes and the WK is totally fine with that.

Here are a few of my early experiences in the world of water kefir. There are plenty of resources online to help you get started, my favorite being Yemoos, where I ordered my grains from.

  1. Use the highest quality water you can. Go to FindASpring.com to locate the best water in your area. If you use tap water and it is chlorinated, you’ll need to let the chlorine evaporate by letting it sit out for a few days.
  2. WK takes a few feeding cycles to get the fermentation going. It has to get used to it’s new environment. If your WK is flat and sweet it means fermentation isn’t happening. Throw out the liquid and start over. 
  3. My WK really likes dates as opposed to molasses. 80% white sugar and 20% mineral-rich sugar (dates!).
  4. Once it gets fermenting, the gemmy crystals double in quantity each cycle. This means I’ll be able to give away WK grains to all my friends who want to try it. This also means I can start experimenting more, keeping a control WK going in case a test run with a different liquid goes wrong and kills the grains. 
  5. I don’t have a refrigerator so once bottled, I keep the WK out on the table for a few days at room temperature. I believe this has led to a higher alcohol content than normal WK that gets refrigerated right after bottling. 
  6. I’ve been using fruit that is in season such as nectarines, peaches and cantaloupe. These have worked great though I’ve read that some fruits are better than others and extending fermentation/carbonation after bottling.  

Yea for Kitchen Pets!!!

Water Kefir Grains

I aim for a quarter cup sugar (80% white, 20% dates) per 1 quart of water.
I aim for a quarter cup sugar (80% white, 20% dates) per 1 quart of water.