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Water Kefir

A refreshing and bubbly beverage loaded with beneficial bacteria!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Total Time3 d 20 mins
Course: Drinks

Equipment

  • Water Kefir Supplies
  • A glass jar, 2 Qt.
  • A wood spoon (stainless steel or plastic)
  • A paper towel or coffee filter (to cover the jar)
  • A rubber band (to secure the cover)
  • A fine mesh strainer for removing the grains (wood, plastic, or stainless-steel work, not metal)

Ingredients

  • For Initial Fermentation
  • 1/4 cup water kefir grains
  • 1/4 cup sucanat or organic cane sugar
  • 2 figs dried unsulphured
  • 1 lemon cut in half
  • For the Secondary Fermentation
  • 1/2 cup fruit juice or 2 TB sucanat or organic cane sugar

Instructions

  • Bring about 6 cups of filtered water to a boil. (You can also use spring or mineral water.)
  • Add the sugar to the hot water and stir until it dissolves. Then allow it to cool to room temperature. You don't want to add the grains to hot water.
  • Place the water kefir grains into a 2-quart glass jar and pour in the room temp sugar water.
  • Drop in the figs and lemon.
  • Cover the jar loosely with a paper towel or coffee filter. Secure it with a rubber band to allow air in but to prevent stray debris from spoiling the water kefir.
  • Allow the water kefir to ferment for 3-4 days. If possible, place in a warm spot (68°-85°F). The longer it ferments, the stronger the flavor will become.
  • When the water kefir acquires a flavor that suits you, strain it through a non-reactive strainer into a pitcher (use wood or stainless steel).
  • Discard the lemon and figs. Reserve the water kefir grains which can be immediately recultured or stored in water in the fridge for 1-2 weeks. *See note for storing the grains.
  • The water kefir can be enjoyed after its initial fermentation, or you can also ferment it a second time.
  • Secondary fermentation allows you to flavor the water kefir. And the process, which occurs in a tightly capped bottle, allows carbon dioxide to develop, producing a fizzy water kefir.
  • For the secondary fermentation, pour either 1/4 cup fruit juice or 1 TB sucanat into each glass bottle. (You can use glass bottles with flip tops, Kolsch or recycled glass beverage bottles with caps to store the kefir).
  • Then pour the water kefir from the pitcher into the bottles, filling them within 1 inch of their openings. Make sure to leave a little space for the carbonation.
  • Seal the bottles and set them on the counter to ferment a further 24 hours. Keep in mind that warm temps will speed up the fermentation process while cool temps will slow it down.
  • Transfer the bottles of water kefir to the fridge for 3 days to allow the bubbles to set.
  • Open carefully over a sink, as the liquid in the bottle is under pressure. When you release the bottle's seal, the water kefir may fizz and foam.
  • Sip and enjoy your refreshing bubbly beverage!

Notes

Storing Kefir Grains:
Place kefir grains in a new batch of sugar water and store in an airtight glass jar. Place grains in a clean jar and cover with sugar water (1 TB of sugar per cup of water). The most important thing is that the grains are fully submerged in the liquid. When storing the grains, the sugar water should be changed out every 1-2 weeks.
You can leave them in this sugary solution for up to 2 months in the fridge. When ready to make it again, separate the grains from the liquid. Then place in fresh sugar water and culture as usual.
Water Kefir

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