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How to | Our Water Kefir Routine

About 6 weeks ago, my good friend Debbie gifted us some water kefir grains and a bottle of her own fermentation to see if we even liked it!  We did, we ALL loved it and after a few hiccups initially things are brewing along smoothly!  I now have two jars fermenting, ready on alternate days and the kefir grains have multiplied enough for me to prepare two new starters to gift to some lovely ladies this week.  What is kefir? Originating in Mexico, water kefir grains (also known as Sugar Kefir Grains) allow for the fermentation of sugar water or juice to create a carbonated lacto-fermented beverage.  The ‘grains’ are not grains at all but little globules of bacteria and yeast which work their magic in the sugar water, the result is a great tasting, fizzy, probiotic and viatmin filled healthy alternative to juice etc.
So, what’s involved?  Follow the steps below and have a look;

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Getting started with water kefir grains is easy, and definitely made easier by having everything you need on hand.  

  1. Large glass Ball jar or similar, this one holds 1.5 litres and I picked it up at Junk n Disorderly
  2. Glass bottle, Dave found this one at a dollar store for around $3, but you may have ones you can recycle at home – Antipodes water bottles are perfect!
  3. Small glass jar.  Your kefir grains will multiply so be prepared to store them in the fridge when you find you have an excess
  4. Funnel that will fit in the mouth of your glass bottle
  5. Sieve
  6. Tablespoon and long handled spoon

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  1. 6 tblsp water kefir grains {if you are unable to source any from friends you can purchase kefir grains here}
  2. 4 tblsp raw sugar
  3. 1 tblsp raisins
  4. Half a lemon
  5. 1/2 tsp Black Strap Molasses {optional}
  6. 3 cups water
  7. Pinch of baking soda

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Step 1:  Add your 4 tablespoons of raw sugar, 3 cups of water and 6 tablespoons of kefir grains into your large jar in this order.  If you add the sugar after the kefir you can end up with cloudy broken grains.

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Step 2:  Add your raisins, molasses if you want, a pinch of baking soda and half a lemon.  Try and pick as many pips out as you can before adding your lemon, then you won’t have to separate them from the kefir grains later.

Step 3:  Store in a dark, warmish place for approx 48 hours until you see your raisins float, see pic below.

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This pic shows why you need such a big jar when you are only adding 3 cups of water; the fermentation process omits a lot of gas causing pressure to build inside the jar – see how my mighty kefirs have popped up the lid?  If your jar is too small you may risk a kefir explosion!

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Step 4: Once your raisins are floating, scoop them out, also remove the lemon, squeezing the juice back into your jar.

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Step 5: Prepare your bottle for the second fermentation.  If you choose to flavour your kefir add this now.  I’m loving the Barker’s Lite Blackcurrant flavour at the moment.  If you aren’t adding any flavour just stick your funnel in the bottle.

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Step 6:  Using your funnel and sieve pour the liquid from your large jar into the bottle, seal and pop back in the dark cupboard for another 24 hours.

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Step 7: Refrigerate and enjoy!

As I mentioned earlier, the kefir grains will multiply so when you notice you have a bit more than the 6 tablespoons required for a fermentation, place the excess in a small jar in the fridge with 1 tablespoon of sugar and enough water to keep them covered plus a bit more.  Your kefir grains are now ready for more, so give them a light rinse and begin again from Step 1!

 

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Published by

Melissa

I live in rural Auckland, New Zealand. Two boys, one big, one not so big and 2 boy dogs belong to me and I them. I love Coca Cola in all of its sugar-less forms and I love you internet. I take way too many pictures of my kids and collect them all here. This is what I am doing when I should be cleaning or cooking or doing other 'useful' things.

4 thoughts on “How to | Our Water Kefir Routine”

  1. This is such a great tutorial Melissa! I've been meaning to do kefir or kombucha for AGES – this might be just the kick in the pants I need as you've explained it so well!!!!

  2. oooooo great tutorial Melissa! I had a batch ages ago but didn't read through the pages and pages of notes that came with it and consequently forgot to feed it and, well, it didn't like that… I do enjoy it so I better get myself some more grains now I've got this to refer to! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Oh my goodness, they look great. I tried this a few years back but the grains were tiny and never fermented. I make kombucha these days so if you ever want to do a trade I'm keen!

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