What is kefir? It is a fermented milk drink that boasts super nutrition. Although similar to yogurt, kefir has a different blend of bacteria, as well as some yeast. These cultures work on the milk at room temperature creating a drink that has the consistency of runny yogurt. After you drink it, the cultures work together in your gut to help your body fight off intestinal diseases. Kefir’s tart and refreshing flavor contains beneficial yeast as well as friendly ‘probiotic’ bacteria found in yogurt.
This is what kefir grains look like, they are similar to soft cauliflower. They are not grains as we know it, but are live natural starters. The live grains were given to me by a friend who has made fresh kefir for her family for years. The grains grow with use and are strained out after each batch.
In a pint glass jar, add milk and kefir grains. Cover with coffee filter or soft cloth and set on counter for 18-24 hours depending on the temperature. I used organic fat-free milk, but you can use your milk of choice. When the milk has thickened, it is ready to strain.
The resulting developed cultured-milk is strained in order to separate, and retrieve the kefir grains from the kefir. The grains are added to more fresh milk to repeat the simple process for the next batch. This procedure can be performed on an indefinite basis… for kefir grains last forever.
Do not use any metal when fermenting, straining or storing the kefir. As soon as I strain my kefir, I place it in a clean jar in the fridge.
I am so excited to be making our own kefir! My gut is feeling healthier already. Some studies show that kefir is safe for those that are lactose intolerant.
This morning I made a refreshing raspberry drink with my fresh chilled kefir. I added 1 T. strawberry banana Barleans flax oil, 1/2 c. thawed raspberries, (or fresh if you have them) 1 T. chia seeds and 8 drops of berry Sweet Leaf liquid stevia. Stir together and enjoy!
If you let this set for 10-15 minutes, the chia seeds will thicken this to a pudding like consistency. It made me think that this could be a amazing dessert!
Raspberry Chia Kefir Drink
1 c. fresh chilled kefir
1/2 c. raspberries
1 T. Barleans Strawberry Banana Flax Oil
8 drops of Berry flavored liquid stevia
1 T. chia seeds
Stir all together and enjoy this refreshing, nutritious and beautiful drink!