Coconut milk kefir
I just bought some coconut milk kefir at a local store that my doctor told me about. It's wonderful stuff--she alluded to the fact that once you buy some, you can use it as a starter to make your own by just adding a little of your store-bought stuff to coconut milk (we're talking the canned, thick kind here, not the watery stuff in boxes or bottles), putting this in a mason jar and letting it sit in a warm place.
Everything I find on this forum about coconut milk kefir makes it sound somewhat complex, what with having to buy the proper kefir grains and then store them in milk in between batches, etc. Would anyone be able to tell me if they have tried my doc's simple method? I know you can do this with yogurt, simply use a bit of your existing batch for starter for the next batch, so it seems that it should work w/coconut milk, but I'd like to see if anyone else has tried this and how it worked out before I give it a shot.
Thanks for any info you can offer.
i'd be curious to know about this too. i know it works that way with kombucha--buy a bottle and grow your own starter scoby.
That's not how kefir works. Unless the kefir you bought came with the grains still in the container, you need to buy kefir grains and soak them in your preferred milk.
[url=http://www.passionatehomemaking.com/2010/03/how-to-make-coconut-milk-kefir.html]How to Make Coconut Milk Kefir | Passionate Homemaking[/url]
Everything I find on this forum about coconut milk kefir makes it sound somewhat complex, what with having to buy the proper kefir grains and then store them in milk in between batches, etc. Would anyone be able to tell me if they have tried my doc's simple method? I know you can do this with yogurt, simply use a bit of your existing batch for starter for the next batch, so it seems that it should work w/coconut milk, but I'd like to see if anyone else has tried this and how it worked out before I give it a shot.[/QUOTE]
It might not work very well, although I can't say because I haven't done it.
The grains are a symbiotic cluster of yeasts and bacteria -- the culture's not as simple as yoghurt. That's the difference.
However, I see your point that it's a lot of work maintaining the culture. Doubtless it wasn't too much of a chore for Russian housewives during the day to occasionally check the container, shake it, and remove the grains at just the right time, depending on the speed of fermentation, which would depend on the ambient temperature ... then immediately starting another batch to keep the grains happy. Not so easy these days when most people have to be out during the day.
You can store the grains under water in a fridge if you don't intend to make any for awhile, but then they can take a little waking up again.
All this is why I stopped making kefir. Too much fuss, and you have to use it frequently, if you're going to make it continuously.
However, you can also buy sachets of powder to start a kefir fermentation. They're one-use only, unlike the grains, but may be better if you don't want to be continually fussing over a grain culture.
I tried googling around -- this is the sort of thing:
[url=http://www.synergy-health.co.uk/supplements/kefir_culture_kit.html]Kefir UK, Natural Kefir Culture Starter Kits by Mail Order[/url]
That's a UK supplier, but it gives you the idea. You can probably find some by googling something like "kefir sachets".
I've begun making coconut kefir and it's really good stuff...but I bought starter grains. You start them in whole milk then when they're nice and plump move them over to coconut milk (full fat canned) all in a canning jar with a paper coffee filter rubber banded around the top. Put it in a dark warm place and in 24 hours I have some nice kefir to drink/eat...I make it every day. Strain out the grains, gently, put them in another jar with more full fat coconut milk etc..and wait 24hrs. Every third day I make it with milk to keep the grains healthy. It's simple.
This is where I get my supplies and they have great customer service.
Thank you for taking the time to reply, folks--that's some useful info you've provided. I appreciate it!