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Got Probiotics? (Kefir, Yogurt, Other?) - January 2005 - Page 2

post #21 of 136
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla
OK, thanks- I'll just reconstitute powdered milk when I'm out of fresh.

Actually, I'd just leave them in some filtered water in a jar in the fridge until you have more fresh milk.

There was some article I was reading about how the drying process for 'powdereing milk' damages the cholesterol, which is what is not good for your body. It's a personal thing, but I'd avoid drinking powdered milk. I will try to find that article or info.
post #22 of 136
Thread Starter 
Note: First post has been edited. Has new info and link info
post #23 of 136
xenabyte- Thank you so much. It was alittle tangy with the cranberry juice. This morning I made a smoothy with the kefir, a shot of cranberry juice and a banana. It was pretty tasty. It looks much more appetizing having the curds smoothed out in the smoothy. So, this will probably be my staple breakfast using different fruits. I'm pretty excited about using it to cook with in place of buttermilk. It's hard to find a good organic buttermilk that does not break the bank, and I cook with it all the time. I strained off some whey and I'm trying to get a sourdough starter going. I am a flop at breadmaking.

I will most likely continue with my extra strain until I'm comfortable ingesting a grain or two. It's still alittle wierd for me right now. I am pretty new to fermented foods. I was making my own yogurt for awhile, but I kept getting some wierd things happening. I think I might get a yogurt maker in the next little while.

This last brew took less time, so I think I will do 1 c. of milk next and go for 2 cups with the brew after that.
post #24 of 136
Hi everyone!
So we just strained off our first batch of water grains that I had soaked in lemon, ginger, echinacea root, red clover flower and chammomile flower with rapadura sugar.

WOW, it is fantastic, not sweet at all and I am glad since I was concerned about the sugar. But, the grains ate it all up and the drink is very strong and potent. My dd, who is three, and I drank a portion each and each sip we looked at eachother and said, mmmm this is good. It was a really funny, good moment. :LOL

Kefir rocks. I would wear a t-shirt that said that!

post #25 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by mountain mom
Hi everyone!
So we just strained off our first batch of water grains that I had soaked in lemon, ginger, echinacea root, red clover flower and chammomile flower with rapadura sugar.

WOW, it is fantastic, not sweet at all and I am glad since I was concerned about the sugar. But, the grains ate it all up and the drink is very strong and potent. My dd, who is three, and I drank a portion each and each sip we looked at eachother and said, mmmm this is good. It was a really funny, good moment. :LOL

Kefir rocks. I would wear a t-shirt that said that!

the tea sounds soo good! i've never liked milk though. i was forced to drink it growing up :blech
i got my grains though and put them in milk. the grains are a clump floating on the top-i think i might give them a bit of a stir with a bamboo skewer. i tasted it tonight even though it's prolly not ready-and i love it! once i learn more i really want to switch part of my batch into making the tea. tea is really up my tree!
post #26 of 136
We had our grains in goat milk for a couple of days, then put them back in cow milk. Dh didn't rinse them, just switched the milk. The next day I couldn't drink the kefir, it still had the goat taste. Now I'm not going to be drinking milk for the next couple of weeks, so he put it back in goat milk. Will it be forever goaty or will it go back to normal taste with a good rinse?
post #27 of 136
on dom's site, there used to be brand name Kefir products that you could buy in store, does anyone know the products or have the link?
post #28 of 136
Splendid,
Here in the Boston area I see Lifeway and Helios brands of Kefir sold in quarts at the fancy/healthy markets, both plain and flavored. I usually get the Helios because (I think) it has less junk in it.

But, I've asked xenabyte to send me some kefir grains, so I can stop paying upwards of $3/quart for the stuff!
post #29 of 136
Thank you.

My HS sells a Kefir starter set as well, I just wanted to know what commercial kefir tasted like as compared to the stuff I will be making at home.
post #30 of 136
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by danielsmommy
We had our grains in goat milk for a couple of days, then put them back in cow milk. Dh didn't rinse them, just switched the milk. The next day I couldn't drink the kefir, it still had the goat taste. Now I'm not going to be drinking milk for the next couple of weeks, so he put it back in goat milk. Will it be forever goaty or will it go back to normal taste with a good rinse?
You can try rinsing them in filtered, cool water and putting them in cow milk until the smell goes away or even letting them sit in filtered water in the refrigerator for a few days.

Also, an overnight soak in canned coconut milk will usually do the trick too.
(I soaked some 'goat milk raised' grains in coconut milk and one soak did the trick!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by splendid
on dom's site, there used to be brand name Kefir products that you could buy in store, does anyone know the products or have the link?
Not sure what specific brand he recommends, but I'll second Helios pre made store brand (though they do add in milk to thin it down for drinking) and if you are looking for a powdered starter set, I have used and like, Yogourmet Brand Yogurt and Kefir starters:

http://www.lyo-san.ca/english/yogourmet.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by cjr
I will most likely continue with my extra strain until I'm comfortable ingesting a grain or two. It's still alittle wierd for me right now.
I understand that completely! I found this little nylon strainer cup, that is actually designed for putting loose tea leaves in and setting in your tea cup, then you just lift it out and have a perfectly clear cup of tea. It's actually really nice (fits just in the opening of a wide mouth canning jar) and I pour the final kefir through it and it catches ALL the grains. Anything that still clumps, I use a small very flexible and soft silicon baby spoon to stir and push kefir through. Then I add the grains back to the brew jar. I finally found the link, here it is:

http://www.herbalremedies.com/brew-basket.html
post #31 of 136
I thought I would get one of those childrens mesh bath toys, suggested earlier. It's really not that big a deal. I woke up this morning and opened the container with the kefir is from yesturday's brew and the extra little grains were floating on top so I just picked them out. I also use a plastic coated baby spoon, it works great.

My kefir sourdough starter is doing great so far. I'm excited about this one.
post #32 of 136
I just got my kefir grains in the mail...actually they aren't at all grain like, more cauliflower like. I know it's hard to be successful with the first batch. I used rice milk because that's all I have in the house right now. It didn't work at all. Not even close to being kefir. Should I have rinsed them more before using? That's what I was confused about. I just rinsed them a little bit in bottled water before putting them in the rice milk yesterday. Then today I drained them out of the rice milk and rinsed them in tap water, which I know you're not supposed to do but, I didn't really know what else to rinse them with. So now they're just sitting in my strainer and I don't know what I should do with them. I thought you could make kefir out of rice milk but, maybe not? Any advice would be appreciated.
post #33 of 136
With my old kefir grains I always used organic milk. After awhile it would seperate and all of that. With my new grains all I had was raw milk and so I used that. I never seperates. It just gets thicker and thicker. It's like that gak junk that kids play with. It was so gross looking. It doesn't get fizzy or yeasty but it doesn't smell sour either. WTH?
post #34 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by xenabyte
Actually, I'd just leave them in some filtered water in a jar in the fridge until you have more fresh milk.

There was some article I was reading about how the drying process for 'powdereing milk' damages the cholesterol, which is what is not good for your body. It's a personal thing, but I'd avoid drinking powdered milk. I will try to find that article or info.
The thing is, I'm allergic to cow's milk and I can't always find the fresh goat milk in the store. I keep powdered goat milk available for emergencies (it also works well in hot cocoa,lol.)
post #35 of 136
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mz_libbie22
I just got my kefir grains in the mail...actually they aren't at all grain like, more cauliflower like.

I know it's hard to be successful with the first batch. I used rice milk because that's all I have in the house right now. It didn't work at all. Not even close to being kefir. Should I have rinsed them more before using? That's what I was confused about. I just rinsed them a little bit in bottled water before putting them in the rice milk yesterday. Then today I drained them out of the rice milk and rinsed them in tap water, which I know you're not supposed to do but, I didn't really know what else to rinse them with. So now they're just sitting in my strainer and I don't know what I should do with them. I thought you could make kefir out of rice milk but, maybe not? Any advice would be appreciated.

Califlower shaped ones is a good thing, that means you got a big fat juicy one, that will usually produce many babies...

Really, you don't NEED to rinse the grains, unless you drop them on the floor or a dirty counter top... They can be gently stirred in the Kefir to help knock off some of the larger curds, but they are protected a bit by leaving some kefir or curdy bits clinging to them. The Dom goes into a whole page about 'to rinse or not to rinse' Kefir Grains. Definitely Don't use chlorinated tap water, though, that'll kill them.

You can 'ferment' or 'innoculate' rice milk (or soy or other nut seed milks) with the 'Kefiran' bacteria and yeasts, however it will not set up like normal milk will (curds and all that), since there are not really anything in those types of fake milks to turn into curds and whey. Milk is it's own unique substance that is predisposed to forming the 'curds' and such associate with yogurt and Kefir.

Rice/soy/etc is really more like making a Kefir d' Aqua, than making a 'Kefir milk'. Just so you know. So it definitely will not look or taste anything like milk that's been Kefir'd.

Go to the Dom's site, he has a whole section on making Kefir drinks from alternatives like rice or soy. I have only experimented with trying it once and I didn't really care for the taste as much. So that's the extent of my experimenting with rice milk as a substitute.

Also, leave them sitting in pure filtered water or the rice milk, if you have to have them in something, as just sitting around in a strainer will dry them out and the outer layers of bacteria and yeast will start dying off and it will take longer to 'reactivate' once they in milk.

Hope that helps!
post #36 of 136
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lao80
With my old kefir grains I always used organic milk. After awhile it would seperate and all of that. With my new grains all I had was raw milk and so I used that. I never seperates. It just gets thicker and thicker. It's like that gak junk that kids play with. It was so gross looking. It doesn't get fizzy or yeasty but it doesn't smell sour either. WTH?
I've never been able to get my hands on some REAL raw milk. So I have no idea how the flavor, texture and what not changes.

If it doesn't smell sour, then SOME type of fermenting change is going on. Strange it's not fizzy at all. If it's thickening, that's a good sign, but the not getting fizzy (or at least curding up) is unusual.

What does it taste like? I know real raw milk has it's proteins and enzymes intact, so it'll be competing with natural innoculants and usually is thinner if you 'Kefir' it. Hopefully a mom that uses fresh raw milk will have some input.

I left my brew jar in the oven with light on, over night (and most of next day before I remembered) and it was fizzing like mad, but was the smoothest brew yet, with no curdy clumps, but was definitely thick and yummy!
post #37 of 136
It was thick like snot and gross. I could pick it up with my hand and when I let it run off my hand my hand would still be clean. kwim? I've got my grains going in some regular milk now. We'll see what happens.
post #38 of 136
Is it supposed to be fizzy? Mine is not. How long should I ferment it for? I have only been doing it until it seperates into whey and curds. It is taking a day for two cups of milk. Should I be letting it go longer? I thought it was not supposed to be fizzy. When I bought the store brand it was fizzy and you all said it was not real kefir if it was fizzy. When you say fizzy, do you mean like pop?
post #39 of 136
I put my grains into coconut milk yesterday because we are drowning in kefir cheese, lol. So now I have this thick, cultured coconut stuff! What can I do with it??? Dh is laughing at me!

It seems like my grains are quadrupling daily. I'm going to have to start a back-up batch or something....
post #40 of 136
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjr
Is it supposed to be fizzy? Mine is not. How long should I ferment it for? I have only been doing it until it seperates into whey and curds. It is taking a day for two cups of milk. Should I be letting it go longer? I thought it was not supposed to be fizzy. When I bought the store brand it was fizzy and you all said it was not real kefir if it was fizzy. When you say fizzy, do you mean like pop?

Well, I answered this to your original post a few months back about some fizzy store bought Kefir you had tried (the soggy sock stuff hehe ) :

"Actually, Kefir making produces carbon dioxide (the stuff that gives soda pop it's 'fizz'. So you can have 'fizzy' Kefir, especially if you are brewing with a tight fitting lid on... " Anything with yeast in it will have 'fizzy gasses' in it from CO2 production.

That being said, it's not as strong of a 'fizz' like a can of soda. But it will definitely have pressure build up when you open the lid. I usually don't have extreme fizzing, but one day I did brew it in the oven with just the light on, and OMG was it 'fizzy' the next day. Like REALLY bubble. Was kinda nice actually.

You are fine either way. I think the length of time and temperature you brew at affects the amount of noticable fizz. If you are getting 'curds and whey' you are doing it just fine. It's safe to eat/drink a few hours up to several days brewed. I have drank Kefir from my fridge that has been in there several weeks, and it's fine. So it's a matter of personal taste now. Just find a time length which you like flavor wise.
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