Today, I’ll be introducing you to my new friend. Milk kefir. Actually, I’ll be introducing you to how to make milk kefir to be specific. This new friend is a delicious, nutritious food that we’ve added into our diet.
Finding out about milk kefir, and all its health benefits, really made me want to try it! So, I went searching for kefir grains. Kefir grains? You may ask, what in the world are those? If I were to name the kefir grains, I would not necessarily call them grains. They look more like large tapioca balls to me… tapioca balls that are all packed together. Anyway… I searched for kefir grains and found some! A nutritionist in Calgary makes her own kefir, and had some grains for sale. So, I bought them, and lovingly brought them home with me!
Is milk kefir good for you?
Yes! I found out that kefir has three times the probiotics as yogurt does. It is full of good bacteria and yeast. Great for your body! Especially the tummy. I won’t pretend to know everything about milk kefir, but three times the probiotics has me won over!
What do you need to make milk kefir?
- milk kefir grains. I found mine locally for $5.00, but you can buy them online HERE.
- Mason jars. I always use wide-mouth. I find they are easier to work with.
- Plastic funnel. Apparently I bought this one last April, according to Amazon. I must have lost it in the move?
- Plastic or rubber strainer. I have one very nearly the same as the set I linked. I love mine.
What is the most quirky thing about milk kefir?
Milk kefir does not like metal. Use glass and plastic, just not metal of any kind. Kefir grains are acidic, and they will react when they are in prolonged contact with metal. Apparently some people have had good luck with stainless steel, but I am not going to risk killing off my little grains.
What does milk kefir taste like?
Yogurt. It tastes a lot like yogurt. I mainly put my milk kefir in smoothies for the family, and we love it. I was surprised at how willing they all were to try kefir smoothies. Everyone enjoys their breakfast kefir smoothie in this house, and you can imagine all the different taste buds we have here;)
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What does milk kefir look like, and how can you use it?
If you have ever had a drinkable yogurt, that is pretty much the look and feel of kefir. Again, we put our milk kefir in smoothies, and also in a baked oatmeal recipe that I’ll be sharing very soon.
So, how do you make this lovely stuff?
- Start with kefir grains. If they’ve come from a package, follow the directions on the bag.
- If you have fresh milk kefir grains from a trusted source, then the following will be helpful.
- Place your milk kefir grains in the bottom of a clean 1 quart wide-mouth jar.
- Fill the jar with whole milk, or 3%, up to the shoulder of the jar.
- Place a plastic wide-mouth lid on the jar loosely. There needs to be a bit of airflow.
- Now, just wait. Being in the middle of the cold winter, mine takes about 24-36 hours to be ready to consume. Come this summer, I believe it will take less time – we’ll have to see. I always tip my jar a little, and if the milk is sort of solid and jiggly, I know the milk has become kefir!
- Get out a medium sized glass bowl, and place your strainer over the bowl.
- Unscrew the lid from your mason jar, and pour the kefir as well as the grains into the strainer.
- Swish your fingers gently around the milk kefir until the grains are the only thing left in the strainer.
- Grab a clean mason jar, and place your kefir grains in the bottom of the jar. Fill it with milk, and away you go again!
- Use the funnel to pour the finished kefir into a clean jar, put a plastic lid on it and tuck the jar away in your fridge until needed.
How to make a kefir smoothie!
- First you need a decent blender. We love our Ninja blender!
- Place two whole bananas in the blender with one whole quart jar of your kefir.
- Add 1 cup of frozen berries. We LOVE frozen raspberries.
- And 3 or 4 Tablespoons of honey or maple syrup.
- Blend all together until very smooth and enjoy!
- Makes about 6-7 cups.
I hope you enjoy making kefir for the first time! It’s totally worth it.
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