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Thread: Kefir questions

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  1. #1
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    Kefir questions

    I got kefir grains from Cultures for Health, and it only took them a few days to start making delicious kefir. But I have a couple of questions. It is warm in my house already, upper 70s during the day, and it takes less than 12 hours for three cups of kefir to be ready, starting from cold milk. The folks at Cultures for Health say the kefir grains should be kept at room temperature making kefir most of the time, only storing in the refrigerator occasionally. But that is much more kefir than I need. Have other people successfully used grains long-term making kefir maybe every other day and keeping them in the refrigerator the rest of the time? My theory is to strain out the grains, add them to fresh milk, put that in the refrigerator a day or two, and then bring it out to room temperature to culture.

    I'm used to pouring off the whey of yogurt, occasionally using it in cooking but mostly discarding it, so my first assuption was to pour off the whey from the kefir before using it in my smoothie. Am I wasting good nutrition that way, would it be better to stir it in?
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  2. #2
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    You can make kefir in the fridge too. I do it and it takes a lot longer and tends to be less "fizzy". I also sometimes make the kefir and then strain it and store it in the fridge, I leave the grains, unrinsed, in the jar in the fridge til I next make it. This is sometimes a few days and it seems not to damage it. I've had the same grains for about 4 months now.
    As to the whey, I just stir it back into the kefir and drink the whole thing.

    Hope this helps

    Dave

  3. #3
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    Strain the whey off and use it as they do in "Nourishing Traditions". For making sauerkraut, soaking buckwheat for pancakes, soaking legumes to get rid of anti-nutrients etc.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by breadsauce View Post
    Strain the whey off and use it as they do in "Nourishing Traditions". For making sauerkraut, soaking buckwheat for pancakes, soaking legumes to get rid of anti-nutrients etc.
    Reading this thread again I am appalled that I used to use whey in sauerkraut! Now I don't - just salt and the juice from cabbage (add brine if not enough juice) and the sauerkraut is FAR better. I use a harsch crock and it is really good. Useful link as to why whey is not good for kraut

    No Whey? No way! Pickle Me Too

    I stir the whey back into the kefir now.

    I find the grains are fairly indestructable - they store in the fridge for weeks in milk - just strain them, rinse in tap water and tip into fresh milk and off they go again!

  5. #5
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    I keep my kefir fermenting for 24 hours before straining it and putting the result in the fridge for 24-48 hours, and then start again. I have been doing this for a year. I tend to make 1 pint at a time while keeping a pint in the frdige.

    As for the whey, it is really up to you what you do but is there any reason you do not just mix it back in? Even with the yoghurt it seems to be a bit of a waste to discard it.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_undead_pixie View Post
    i keep my kefir fermenting for 24 hours before straining it and putting the result in the fridge for 24-48 hours, and then start again. I have been doing this for a year. I tend to make 1 pint at a time while keeping a pint in the frdige.

    As for the whey, it is really up to you what you do but is there any reason you do not just mix it back in? Even with the yoghurt it seems to be a bit of a waste to discard it.
    ^ this
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  7. #7
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    Apr 2012
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    Excellent topic. I've got some grains on the way and I'm very curious to hear what folks with experience have to say.

    One big question I have is what do most of you use for your base? I get raw milk fairly regular but is it possible to use full-fat organic store bought ( read: pasturized ) ? Just curious.

    OP-Sorry for the minor hijack there lol.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gotsouthern View Post
    Excellent topic. I've got some grains on the way and I'm very curious to hear what folks with experience have to say.

    One big question I have is what do most of you use for your base? I get raw milk fairly regular but is it possible to use full-fat organic store bought ( read: pasturized ) ? Just curious.

    OP-Sorry for the minor hijack there lol.
    You can use pasteurised. I usually get raw milk, but the farm I get it from had a TB scare and a cow (in calf, sadly) had to be destroyed. The further tests on the poor thing were negative, but the farm now has to wait for further tests so meanwhile I bought and used - successfully - pasteurised, full fat milk.

  9. #9
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    Just bumping this thread as I have a similar kefir question. My problem is the opposite though - my kitchen is quite cool (due to winter having landed) and my kefir is taking a long time to ferment. It's been sitting out for 4 days now and still not ready. I've turned on the heating in an attempt to speed it along and think it should be done by tomorrow, but does it matter if it's taking a long time? Drinking milk that's been sitting out for 4-5 days doesn't sound like a great idea but I don't know if the kefir changes this.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
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    put it next to your slow cooker or on top of the fridge. You might need less milk until you have more culture.

    And I put my grains in the fridge how often and how long I want. No biggie, they are thriving.

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