KEFIR FAQ

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CAN THE MAINTENANCE FREE KEFIR MAKE KEFIR GRAINS?

Although the majority of our customers choose to use the maintenance-free kefir culture and use a small amount each time they make a batch, you can grow the grains from the culture if you prefer.
To do this, take 1 litre of non-chlorinated water and add 1 tablespoon of sugar, just as you would when making water kefir. Then set aside for a week to two weeks to ferment. This is a natural process that occurs when the microorganisms in the maintenance-free kefir culture multiply and begin constructing their home, the grains.

Step by step instructions:

  1. Hands should be washed and dried. All products that will be used in the kefir making process should be cleaned and rinsed. Scald all metal and plastic products with boiling water. Rinse glassware in hot but not boiling water.

  2. Warm your solution of filtered water and sugar to a temperature of 30°C.

  3. Fill a large glass jar or food-grade plastic container halfway with warmed sugar water, leaving

    approximately 3 cm of space at the top of the jar for air.

  4. Gently whisk one dose of Maintenance Free Kefir into your water.

  5. Cover the container with a piece of cloth that allows air to circulate while keeping out dust and

    insects. Using a string or rubber band, secure.

  6. For one week, store in a warm, dark location.

  7. If no grains have grown, add 1 tablespoon sugar and continue fermenting for another week. On the

    surface, you will see the grains forming.

  8. Strain and catch the grains, ready to use.

  9. Once the grains have grown in the sugar water, they can be added to anything to create kefir. If you

    put them in milk, they will grow into milk grains and they will begin to use dairy proteins to create their home.

 

 

 

 

 

DO I NEED TO ADD SUGAR TO MAKE KEFIR?

A pH of 4.1 is recommended for food protection, a high probiotic content, and the best flavour.

The Maintenance Free Kefir Culture's has a combination of culture and yeast that consumes lactose or any other available sugar to produce acid, which lowers the pH. A sugar content of around 5%, or 5 grams per 100 ml, has been determined to be essential. Consult the nutrition label and, if necessary, sweeten your milk, water, or juice with sugar.

 

 

 

 

 

WHAT PH SHOULD MY KEFIR BE?

A pH of 4.1 is recommended for food protection, a high probiotic content, and the best flavour.

The Maintenance Free Kefir Culture's has a combination of culture and yeast that consumes lactose or any other available sugar to produce acid, which lowers the pH. A sugar content of around 5%, or 5 grams per 100 ml, has been determined to be essential. Consult the nutrition label and, if necessary, sweeten your milk, water, or juice with sugar.

 

 

 

 

 

WHY MY KEFIR IS YEASTY?

Kefir is a fermented beverage made with lactic acid bacteria and yeast. As a result, it will have an acidic and yeasty flavour.

Reduce the fermentation time if your Kefir tastes too yeasty. Reducing the fermentation time will result in a milder flavour of Kefir.

 

 

 

 

 

 

HOW CAN I KEEP MY KEFIR WARM IN THE COLDER MONTHS?

In the colder winter months, we would strongly advise the use of a heat mat. The heat mat will keep your kefir warmer during these colder months.

CAN I LEAVE THE KEFIR ON THE BENCH (EVEN IF THAT MEANS IT DOESN'T NECESSARILY STAY BETWEEN 25-36 DEGREES CELSIUS?

Kefir is a colony of living microbes that benefit your gut health. Heat the living microbes above 38°C and they will suffer from heat stress and damage, and at 40°C, your culture will denature rendering them useless. If your milk temperature falls below 25°C, your kefir culture would be too cold to grow optimally, taking longer to ferment and therefore becoming delicious and possibly ceasing to grow entirely.

Most of the year, keeping the kefir on the kitchen counter or in another warm location is appropriate If the kefir is not fermenting properly or is taking an excessive amount of time, we suggest placing a heat mat under the kefir jar. This increases the temperature of your kefir. The heat mats have a maximum temperature which 35 degrees celsius, when using a heat mat we recommend starting with the wheel turned halfway and leaving it for 4-8 hours before any further adjustments. We would then recommend adjusting the temperature wheel so that it keeps the brew within or as near to the optimum temperature as possible (due to fluctuations in temperatures and weather etc).

CAN I USE A YOGHURT MAKER FOR KEEPING MY KEFIR WARM?

No, yoghurt makers are made to maintain a temperature around 40 degrees Celsius, which is too hot for the Kefir Culture to live.

During the summer months in the majority of Australia, simply leaving the kefir on the kitchen counter to ferment would suffice.

During the colder months, the most cost-effective option is a heat mat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

CAN YOU USE HERBAL TEA TO MAKE KEFIR?

As long as your tea does not contain antibacterial herbs and you add sugar to it in the same way you would for water, you can definitely can use herbal tea to make Kefir. If your tea contains antibacterial components, such as those contained in green tea, it will destroy the beneficial bacteria added through Kefir Culture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I AM MAKING WATER KEFIR & I AM UNSURE IF IT IS WORKING. HOW DO I KNOW IF I AM GETTING A GOOD FERMENTATION?

When milk is used to make kefir, you can easily tell if it succeeded because the flavour is acidic and the milk thickens slightly. When making water kefir, it is difficult to tell whether it has fermented since the water appears unchanged. What occurs is that the culture consumes the sugar and produces acid. This results in a decrease in pH. The easiest way to test water kefir is to first measure the pH of the sugar/water mixture and then again after a day of fermentation. If it is working, the pH would have decreased. If you do not have any pH strips, you can do this by taste. Even after fermentation, you can taste the sweetness in the water Kefir, but it will not be as sweet as the initial sugar/water mixture, so you must compare.

To compare the end result of the Kefir water to the original sugar/water or coconut water mixture, for example, the best method is to set aside a small portion of the original mixture in a container.

Possible complications with water kefir include the following:

The use of chlorine-laced water, which can be detrimental to the Kefir culture. The use of demineralized water, which has can be damaging to the kefir culture.

Using a sugar substitute that the culture cannot consume.

 

 

 

 

 

HOW MUCH CULTURE DO I USE TO MAKE KEFIR?

Since the sachet contains enough culture to make 100 litres of Kefir, a very small amount of the kefir culture is needed for each batch of kefir you wish to produce.

We recommend opening the sachet just before brewing your first batch of kefir. Bring the sachet to room temperature first; this should take just a few minutes and prevents condensation from allowing any of the culture to stick to the inside of the sachet. Cut the sachet across the top, then empty the rest of the sachet into the given sterile container. 10% of the contents should be placed in the second container; this will serve as your "working supply." Mark both jars and store them in the freezer.

Your "working supply," which should be approximately 10% the size of your main culture supply, will yield approximately 10 litres of kefir and should be divided according to the batch size you are producing. If making a litre, use 10% of the 10% container (working supply container).

If you have mini measuring spoons, put all of the culture in one jar and spoon it into the other jar... try the Smidgen. Count the spoons and divide by 100. If you obtain ten Smidgens, for example, spoon one back into the now-empty pot. This becomes your 'working stock,' and you should be able to make approximately ten batches of kefir from it.

 

 

 

 

 

HOW SHOULD I STORE MY KEFIR CULTURE?

The Kefir Culture is freeze-dried and should be stored in the freezer for "long term storage." Additionally, since the culture readily absorbs moisture from the air, it should be stored in airtight containers that should be opened only at room temperature.

We have supplied two sterile containers and a zip lock bag for storage of your kefir culture.

 

 

 

 

 

WHY DO WE SEND TWO STERILE JARS?

The two-jar storage and dosing process helps maintain the best possible environment for the culture, prevents cross-contamination, and aids in dose control. We suggest storing approximately 90% of the culture in one jar that is rarely opened and a limited amount of culture in another jar as a working supply.

When a frozen/cold object is removed from the freezer, moisture condenses onto it from the surrounding air. This is valid for the opened sterile jar containing the maintenance-free kefir culture.

Since Kefir Culture must be stored in the freezer and is so concentrated, the storage jar will be opened several times (if held in a single jar) before being consumed, and it is difficult to keep the culture completely dry.

This has the added benefit of decreasing the likelihood of contamination of the culture. If the working stock does become contaminated, the main supply remains safe.

 

 

 

 

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A "BEST BEFORE DATE" AND "USE BY DATE"?

A "Use By Date" is placed on items that must be consumed or discarded before the specified date, as these foods will deteriorate and may become unsafe to eat.

A "Best Before Date" is placed on goods to signify that they are best used before the specified date but can still be used after that date.

When used for culture products, the "Best By Date" is set by the suppliers, who must provide a certain amount of leeway for time spent in transit or not properly stored. Given that both our suppliers and we

take great care to ensure that these items are properly stored before shipping, we are assured, and experience indicates, that these products will continue to function efficiently well beyond the expiration dates on the packaging.

 

 

 

 

 

CAN I CLONE MORE KEFIR FROM THE KEFIR I MAKE WITH YOUR KEFIR CULTURE?

Yes, you may clone your subsequent batches of kefir from the kefir you create with our culture; however, when you clone from a previous batch, you clone all of the bacteria present in the kefir, including any contaminants. It could be argued that risking the disappointment of failed kefir to save 20 cents on culture is a false economy.

 

 

 

 

 

CAN I USE STORE BOUGHT COCONUT WATER TO MAKE COCONUT WATER KEFIR?

Yes, you can make coconut water kefir using store-bought coconut water. Simply ensure that you purchase organic coconut water or, at the very least, one that is free of preservatives. Bear in mind that a preservative's function is to eliminate microorganisms and avoid spoilage and/or fermentation.

 

 

 

 

 

CAN I USE SOY OR OTHER ALTERNATIVE MILKS TO MAKE KEFIR?

Indeed! Our Kefir Culture is compatible with soy milk, almond milk, coconut milk and water, fruit juices, and filtered or mineral water with natural sugars.

 

 

 

 

 

WHY HAS MY KEFIR CULTURE STARTED CLUMPING TOGETHER?

The clumping of the kefir culture is formed as a result of the culture absorbing moisture. Moisture may be absorbed either from the air or from condensation on the interior of the storage container if it is opened while still cold.

Allowing the culture to reach room temperature is important, and we must keep the jar closed as much as possible to limit the amount of fresh air that comes into contact with the kefir culture. Additionally, avoid making kefir on very humid or damp days unless you run the air conditioner to dry out the air. Spend no time attempting to judge 10% with absolute precision. Simply remember to use a very small volume, which would likely result in the jar being open for less than 20 seconds.

 

 

 

 

 

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN KEFIR CULTURE AND KEFIR GRAINS?

We often receive questions about the difference between kefir grains and kefir culture. Both produce an excellent, nutritious beverage, but their application is very different.

Kefir Grains

“The kefir grain is a symbiotic association of yeasts and lactic acid bacteria (LAB) that is embedded in a resilient polysaccharide matrix consisting of branching chains of glucose and galactose as a result of milk lactose microbial metabolism.”

To put it simply, the grains seen are not the microorganisms themselves, but rather the home they constructed from the raw materials available to them. They reside in the home they constructed, and therefore the grains represent both the house and its inhabitants.

The culture also utilises protein as a structural component. According to science, kefir grains contain a relatively stable and specific microbiota that is encased in a polysaccharide and protein matrix.

Kefir Culture (Maintenance-Free)

Our kefir culture is a freeze-dried powdered mixture of lactic acid bacteria and yeast. This is referred to as "kefir culture" in most cases. Thus, a culture is a collection of microorganisms without a home.

This means that you can use kefir culture in any liquid without worrying about grains moving from one form to another. For instance, you may want to make dairy kefir on Monday but prefer coconut water kefir by Friday. If you used grains to make your dairy kefir, you will be unable to use these grains in coconut water. However, if you were using the culture, you could switch back and forth between them whenever you pleased.

 

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