Speaking of yummy fermented drinks, perhaps the most delicious, creamy, and healthy of them all is milk kefir. If you haven’t heard of it before, don't worry, all will be explained. But for those looking to make their own healthy homemade version - welcome - we have much to discuss.
I’m new here. What’s milk kefir?
Kefir is a fermented milk drink. It’s reminiscent of greek yoghurt - expect not as thick, but no less creamy or sour. The big difference is - kefir is packed full of gut-loving probiotics and healthy nutrients. Not only does drinking keto bring your taste buds into paradise - it happens to be super good for you too.
What are kefir grains?
Kefir grains are the building blocks of any kefir based drink - including water-kefir and others too. Kefir ‘grains’ are small gel-like rocks packed full of all the right yeasts and bacteria to get your kefir party started. For all you gluten free people out there - this yummy goodness is entirely 'grain’ and gluten free.
How is it made?
It is made by fermenting these kefir grains in milk. The kefir grains act as the fermenting agent in your mixture - a bit like how the SCOBY is used to ferment kombucha. So the process is actually quite simple - place your kefir grains into a glass of milk and cover it up and leave to ferment for 12-24 hours. Voila!
What do I need to make it?
Making milk kefir at home is super easy. If you have the right equipment, that is. While it can be possible to DIY the fermentation process - it can be extremely difficult to manage the airflow. For best results - we’ve designed the ultimate Kefirko Kefir Maker kit. This has everything you’re going to need to make delicious, creamy homemade milk kefir right in your own kitchen.
Our Kefirko Kefir Maker Kit includes:
- 1x Kefirko - ferment bottle designed to optimise airflow and facilitate the fermentation process
- 1x swizzle stick to stir your milk kefir
- 1x printed booklet with 30+ recipes
- 1x user manual
- 1x squeezer
- 1 x Packet of Fresh Kefir Milk Grains
- 1 x Packet of Milk Kefir Growth Premix
Benefits of getting the kit?
Without the right tools - fermenting, straining, and (if they stay alive and healthy) reusing your kefir grains again and again can be hard. Making use of the 30+ recipes can be super helpful if you get ‘tired’ of making the same drink over and over again. If you’ve got the kit, it’s easier to keep everything in one place - using the same tools each time will make your whole process much easier too.
Here’s a step by set process on how to make delicious milk kefir at home using our Kefirko Maker Kit.
- 5g organic kefir grains
- 250ml organic milk - steer clear of low-fat milk
- 15g milk kefir growth premix
Step by Step:
- Ensure all your equipment is super clean and free of dust or traces of antimicrobial soaps
- Pour the milk into your Kefirko Maker
- Add the growth premix if you’re using it
- Stir in the kefir grains and mix with the swizzle
- Twist on the Kefirko lid ensuring some air is able to get through
- Leave for 12-24 hours in a dry spot out of the sunlight, between 20 and 30C
- Shake every few hours (or whenever you happen to be around to avoid the build-up of yeast on the surface)
- Your kefir is now ready to serve - simply strain it out and reuse your kefir grains in a new batch of milk
What about a second ferment?
For those wanting even more tangy flavour and nutrient goodness, a second ferment can really bring out the magic of kefir. And it’s really simple too. Once your first ferment is done - just add some flavouring like orange, lemon, berries, or even spices such as turmeric, mix well and leave for another 1-4 hours. Refrigerate until cold and serve. The second ferment is where you can start to play with different recipes. Have fun!
Is my kefir fermenting the right way?
If this is your first kefir batch and you’re freaking out because things might be going wrong and you’re not sure what to do? Relax. Making the perfect milk kefir can take a few goes. Nevertheless, look out for the following signs:
- Sometimes it can be hard to tell if everything is actually happening. Check after a few hours and you should see the milk start to thicken - don’t worry that’s exactly what it should be doing.
- Kefir taking a while to start thickening? Check the temperature of the room - if it’s below 20C, move your kefir into a warmer spot, or turn the heat up a bit.
- Towards the end of the ferment, you should smell a rich, tangy sourness. Congratulations. You’ve nailed it!
Tips on what to look out for along the way
As you begin your kefir journey - you’ll slowly become aware of different things that impact how fast and well your kefir milk ferments. Things like temperature, time, and amount of kefir grains vs milk, and so on. This can take time, but once you’ve made it a few times - you’ll start to notice the little things like:
- Longer ferment time makes for a more tart and sour finish
- Sometimes when it’s a hot day the ferment will speed up
- The less airflow during fermentation - the more alcoholic it becomes.