I just bought water (live)Kefir grains for the first time. I heard that it was normal for it to take awhile to get use to its environment before it really starts going. Well, the ingredients I used were :: bottled spring water, organic cane sugar, and my grains. I rinsed off the grains in the spring water when I first got them, put them in my quart sized mason jar, added 5 TB of the sugar, and filled it up with the water with 1 inch head space, covered with a paper towel and secured it with a rubber band. I then let it sit on the counter in a fairly shady spot for 2 days (with no visible activity). The smell was a normal yeasty sort of smell. I then strained the grains in to a bottle with an air-tight flip top stopper. I flavored it with 1 cup of natural grape juice. After 1 day in the bottle, it was fizzy! I put it in the fridge, let it get cold and it was delicious! But...my next batch (which I followed the exact same steps) didn't turn out AT ALL! I let the flavored Kefir ferment in the bottle for 2 days and NOTHING! It didn't really smell different, but there was no fizz, no sediment, or anything! What the heck?? So with my third batch, I added just a pinch of baking soda to see if that would help. and with my 4th batch I added a pinch of baking soda and a pinch of regular brown sugar to each quart jars. (my grains have been multiplying! I guess that is a good sign right?) Any suggestions to help really get these grains going? Why did the first batch turn out great and the second...not so much? Thank you!!
(note: I only use plastic, wood and glass! also, during the "first" ferment, my grains just sit at the bottom with NO activity! That has happened with every batch, even my first successful batch)