Milk kefir is a delicious, fermented probiotic drink that is made of fresh or dried kefir grains. It has a tangy taste like yoghurt and a texture that is similar to drinking yoghurt.
In this article, you will learn how to make homemade milk kefir using fresh grains.
Equipment that you will need:
- A glass jar.
- Piece of unbleached cheesecloth/muslin.
- Rubber band.
- Non-metallic plastic mesh strainer.
- Non-metallic stirring utensil (wooden or plastic spoon).
- 5g packet of active milk kefir grains.
- 250ml of full cream organic, jersey or goat’s milk.
Instructions for making milk kefir:
1. Pour 250ml of milk into your glass jar.
2. Add milk kefir grains.
3. Cover your glass jar with a piece of cheesecloth or muslin. This will protect your grains from insects and dust. Secure with a rubber band.
4. Place your jar on your kitchen bench out of direct sunlight. The ideal temperature for making kefir is between 20-24 degrees Celsius.
5. Leave for 12 – 48 hours. Your kefir should have a thickened texture, similar to a light yoghurt (not a thick Greek yoghurt) and have a slightly tangy taste and aroma. This process will be quicker in warmer weather.
6. Drain the milk from the grains using a fine mesh, plastic strainer. Gently squeeze the milk through the strainer using your wooden or plastic strainer. A
7. Drink and enjoy the milk, or store in the fridge.
8. Repeat steps 1-7 using your leftover grains. If you are not making a current batch of kefir, your grains can be stored in fresh milk in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
9. As your milk kefir grains grow and multiply, you can gradually increase the amount of milk that you use with each batch.
- When your kefir grains become too thick to easily strain, use your fingers to gently squeeze the milk out of the grains. Ensure that your hands are clean. Do not use anti-bacterial soap as it will contaminate your grains.
- In temperatures under 20 degrees Celsius, your kefir may be sluggish and the fermentation process may take longer.
- Hot weather, over 30 degrees Celsius will create an unsafe environment for your kefir, as it will create an environment of ‘bad’ bacteria. Please discard your grains and milk.