Where to buy Kefir grains ?

Where to get Kefir Grains ?

Kefir is a cultured milk product which has a huge range of health benefits. It is a creamy product containing a refreshing flavor and a sour tart. It contains plenty of beneficial yeasts and probiotic bacteria that contribute to the several health benefits that kefir boasts of. Kefir is made with kefir grains which are gelatinous yellow or white particles.

What are kefir grains?

Kefir grains contain a mixture of yeast or bacteria clumped together with complex sugars and milk proteins called caseins. The size of the kefir grain ranges from the size of a wheat grain to the size of a hazelnut. The kefir grains properly ferment the milk to produce the cultured product called kefir.

People often get confused about where to buy kefir grains. This is because the kefir grains are not frequently available in both stores and online. There are very few trustworthy sources which sell Kefir grains on the internet. One of the trustworthy sources is Kefirshop.eu. Kefirshop.eu sells fresh an dehydrated kefir grains of good quality. The best thing about Kefishop.eu is that it ships its products internationally. The price of grains that Kefirshop.eu sell is also quite affordable.

Where can you buy the best fresh kefir grains?

You can go for fresh kefir grains instead of dehydrated kefir grains if you are living in the Europe. This is because you can use the kefir grains immediately after you get them in the mail after a few days. Kefirshop.eu sells fresh kefir grains of a nice quality. One to two tablespoons of kefir grains would be more than enough for you to start making your own kefir.

Live kefir grains are sold at Kefirshop.eu are vacuum-sealed with air and well-packed. Thus, you would be happy to find the grains in a usable and intact condition when they arrive. Many sellers do not seal the grains properly and therefore, due to poor packaging, they are hardly of any use.

Where can you buy the best dehydrated kefir grains?

If you do not need the kefir grains for immediate use, then you can go for dehydrated kefir grains instead of fresh grains. Kefishop.eu provides the best quality dehydrated kefir grains. The additional thing that you have to do with the dehydrated grains is the process of rehydration. However there is nothing to worry much as the seller would provide you with instructions.

You can get a reasonable quantity of kefir grains within ten euros from Kefirshop.eu. The shipping time is acceptable and the Kefirshop.eu only charge a small extra amount for shipping. The packaging of Kefirshop.eu is definitely worth applauding as they pack the kefir grains in a bubble envelope, after sealing the grains in a plastic bag. Whenever you purchase kefir grains from Kefirshop.eu, you would get an instruction page, which you can follow to prepare the kefir.

What is a freeze-dried kefir starter ?

Many people choose a freeze-dried kefir starter instead of fresh or dehydrated kefir grains. Generally the people who do not have the time to make new batches of kefir every few days choose this option of freeze-dried starter. They are available in powder form. Though they are not actual kefir grains, the freeze-dried starter is a convenient option for people who want to enjoy kefir made at home once in awhile. This is the perfect solution where they don’t need to maintain the kefir grains. The best freeze-dried starter can be obtained from the Kefirshop.eu.

There are also some other sources where you can buy kefir grains such as KefirLady and Cultures of Health. However the grains are expensive and the packaging is not too good.

Fresh water kefir grains

Fresh water kefir grains

How to handle kefir grains ?

How to maintain Kefir grains ?

Dairy kefir is a cultured milk beverage that is bragged about, for its plenty of probiotic benefits. It is a fermented milk product that contains plenty of beneficial yeasts and bacteria. Many people prepare kefir at home, after purchasing kefir grains. The kefir grains are usually tiny chunks of bacteria and yeast, mixed with sugars, fats and milk proteins called caseins. Kefir grains can be used for an indefinite amount of time if they are maintained properly. A new batch of kefir can be prepared every day if you maintain the kefir grains properly. In order to do so, you need to follow some dos and don’ts while handling kefir grains.

  1. You should never mix kefir grains with tap water. This is because the chemicals present in tap water such as fluorine and chlorine can cause potential damage to the kefir grains. Therefore, you must use filtered or mineral water which is devoid of these chemicals.
  1. You must not overheat or boil the kefir grains as too much heat can kill the beneficial bacteria present in kefir.
  1. You must use glass, plastic or wooden utensils while preparing kefir. The best choice is obviously glass utensils as they are easy to sterilize. However, you should not use metal utensils at any cost. This is because kefir reacts with metals. Thus, metal can contaminate the kefir you are preparing.
  1. You should not freeze the kefir grains. Freezing totally stops or halts the fermentation process. Many kefir grains cannot be revived after freezing. They immediately go to a deep-sleep-freeze-phase on freezing. The process of reviving frozen kefir grains is difficult. A better option is to dried the kefir grains.
  1. You must store the kefir grains in a clean jar. The jar containing kefir grains must be always covered with a cloth so that you can prevent the grains from any contamination.
  1. The kefir grains should not be starved. You must change the milk after 48 hours. When the kefir grains are fed with fresh milk, they stay alive and active.
  1. Though there are no fixed kefir grains to milk ratio, the general rule is to use 1 part kefir grains and 10 parts milk by volume. The milk is the food for the bacteria and yeasts.
With plenty of health benefits, kefir is a beverage that is widely recommended by doctors and this healthy food can be easily prepared at home if you follow these simple 7 tips listed above. Your kefir grains will always be well maintained.

Kefir can help people having lactose intolerance and Candida

Kefir is tolerated by lactose intolerant people

Kefir has a huge range of health benefits because of its probiotic properties. Kefir is generally prepared from the milk of cows, goats or sheep. Both yogurt and kefir are made from fermented milk. However the health benefits of kefir are plenty in comparison to yogurt. Kefir keeps the digestive system of human beings clean and healthy because of the beneficial yeasts and bacteria contained in it. The consistency of kefir is thicker than milk and it has a tart taste.

Kefir is a good option for lactose intolerant people

Lactose intolerance is a very common digestive problem. This is caused because of deficiency in the enzyme called lactase which helps in the digestion of the milk sugar called lactose. Bloating, gas and diarrhea are the common symptoms of lactose intolerance. People with lactose intolerance generally cannot consume milk and dairy products. The problem of lactose intolerance differs from person to person. Some people have to stay away from all dairy products whereas others can indulge in only a little amount.

Lactose intolerant people can however have kefir. This is because the beneficial bacteria present in kefir secrete the enzyme called lactase which helps in digestion of the lactose. An experiment was conducted on few lactose intolerant people. They were divided in two groups. One group was given yogurt to eat and the other group was given kefir to drink. After about eight hours, it was found that the people who were given yogurt to eat had only symptoms of gas but no symptoms of bloating and diarrhea. On the other hand, the people who were given kefir to drink reported no symptoms of lactose intolerance. The people who drank kefir had lower hydrogen levels in their breath. This is because kefir contains far more beneficial bacteria than yogurt which boosts digestion.

Kefir is good for treating people with Candida yeast infections

Nowadays, plenty of people treat Candida yeast infections by using kefir. Candida is a harmful yeast that infects children, men and women. Kefir contains plenty of beneficial yeasts such as Saccharomyces which help in curing Candida yeast infections.However you must know that only having kefir is not enough to treat Candida yeast infections. Your diet should comprise complex carbohydrates, vegetables containing high fiber and protein. Along with kefir, a balanced diet is required to treat Candida yeast infections. You also need to drink at least eight glasses of water every day along with large fiber intake. In order to fight Candida, kefir produces a lot of mucus in the colon. You must also exercise regularly. Regular exercise stimulates your colon and intestines. As a result, they are cleansed.

Kefir is a wonderful and natural remedy. It keeps the body well nourished, balanced and healthy. When the body is nourished and is in a healthy condition, further infections of Candida yeast can be prevented in the future.

However kefir does not suit all people. So even after having kefir, if you see you are not getting rid of Candida yeast infections, then you must consult a doctor and take proper medication. Some people on the other hand, are allergic to a particular kind of milk such as goat’s milk or cow’s milk. So if you are allergic to goat’s milk, then buy kefir made from cow’s milk. Nowadays soy milk kefirs are also available in the market.

Kefir is a wonderful dairy product

You must be convinced by now that kefir is such a wonderful dairy product. Apart from containing plenty of beneficial bacteria and yeasts, kefir is also a good source of potassium, calcium and protein. You must include it in your diet today to be healthy, fit and to keep digestive disorders and infections away.

How to rehydrate water kefir grains ?

How to activate dried Water Kefir Grains ?

Water kefir is a very healthy beverage. It is made with sugar water and water kefir grains. The plenty of probiotics present in this fermented beverage can improve the digestive system of your body. Water kefir grains are different from milk kefir grains. The milk kefir grains are white in color whereas the water kefir grains look more as semi-transparent crystals.

How do water kefir grains look like ?

Here you can see how do water kefir grains look like when they are still FRESH

Here you can see how do water kefir grains look like when they are DRIED

Here you can see how do water kefir grains look like when they are DRIED

Though you can easily buy fresh kefir grains, using dehydrated kefir grains is a better idea. Especially if you have a friend who regularly makes water kefir, then she will surely have some stored dehydrated grains which you can use to make kefir. In this fast paced life, it is sometimes difficult to buy fresh kefir grains as they have to be dealt with, right away. Dried grains can be used whenever you have time.

How to Rehydrate or Activate Water Kefir Grains

Rehydrating water kefir grains is not a difficult task. Here is the detailed process to rehydrate kefir water grains:

  • The dehydrated kefir grains would look yellowish brown or reddish brown in color, when you would purchase them.
  • Instructions are written generally on the back cover of dehydrated kefir grains which tells to soak the dehydrated grains gently in a sugar mixture and keep it undisturbed for a few days. It is better to soak the dehydrated grains in sugar mixture for about 3-4 days.
  • To rehydrate the water kefir grains, you need to prepare the sugar mixture first at room temperature. Take four cups of water and dissolve 4-6 tablespoons of sugar in it. Stir the water so that the sugar gets totally dissolved in it. It would be better if you use mineral water or purified water instead of chlorinated water. You can use either brown sugar or white sugar, depending on your preference.
  • Now you should pour the sugar water mixture into a big glass jar. Add the dehydrated kefir grains in the jar.
  • Now cover the glass jar with a coffee filter or a tea towel. You can fasten it with the help of a rubber band.
  • Allow the grains to become plump in the sugar water mixture. Let the grains get rehydrated properly for about 4-7 days.
  • After the water kefir grains have undergone the process of rehydration, the grains would look plump and thick. 2 spoons of dried kefir grains can enlarge to almost 1/3rd

Thus, you can see that the process of rehydrating kefir water grains is so simple and easy. Once you have rehydrated the kefir water grains, you can proceed with making water kefir.

Water kefir is simple to make

How to dehydrate kefir grains ?

Dehydrating kefir grains is quick and easily DONE


People dehydrate kefir grains to keep a backup in case anything happens to the original set of grains. The dehydrated grains can survive till one year. Moreover dehydrated kefir grains are so much easier to transport than wet kefir grains. There would be no concern regarding the liquid leaking out of the package if you transport dehydrated kefir grains to some place. When kefir grains are dehydrated, they become dormant. Hence you don’t have to worry about the packaging of the kefir grains.
How to dehydrate your milk or water kefir grains

How to dehydrate your milk or water kefir grains

Here is the detailed procedure of dehydrating kefir grains :

  • At first, rinse the kefir grains properly with water. It would be better if you use mineral water or purified water instead of tap water because the chlorine content in tap water is high. This is done to get rid of sediments which may have accumulated from fermentation.
  • Now, lay out the washed grains on a paper towel to drip off the excess water.
  • After the paper towel has soaked the excess water, lay the kefir grains carefully on a clean glass dish, a wax paper or a parchment paper.
  • Next, cover the dish with a paper towel. If you do not cover it, the grains may get contaminated by flies and insects. Allow the kefir grains to dry slowly at room temperature. You will see that they have turned yellow and hard after some days. Alternatively you can use a food dehydrator to dry the kefir grains. You should set the dehydrator at the lowest temperature. However, this process is not much recommended because the kefir grains are quite sensitive to heat.
  • Generally, the kefir grains take 3-5 days to get dried. This is especially in the case of large kefir grains. If the grains are small, then it will get dried within 2 days.
  • After the kefir grains are properly dried, you can store them in a freezer or refrigerator.
Thus, you can see that dehydrating kefir grains is such a simple and easy process. Kefir grains are usually of 2 types: water kefir grains and milk kefir grains. When you are dehydrating milk kefir grains, then you should rinse the grains with milk. The kefir grains would look quite smaller than their original size after drying up. The color will be yellowish and all the grains would be totally shriveled up. It is a wise idea to keep plenty of dried kefir grains as a backup.

Milk Kefir vs Yogurt

Difference between Kefir and Yogurt

Both yogurt and milk kefir are cultured milk products. Both the foods are good for health as they are rich in calcium, protein, vitamin B and potassium. They are a little sour in taste and have an identical tart. Both yogurt and milk kefir can be found in plain form and in different fruit flavors. The live kefir cultures used to produce both yogurt and milk kefir results in the breakdown of the milk sugar. This facilitates lactose digestion. Their primary difference lies in the types and numbers of beneficial bacteria contained in them.

Here are the chief differences between milk kefir and yogurt

  1. The consistency of milk kefir is much thinner than that of yogurt. It is usually obtained as a beverage. You can pour some milk kefir over a cereal, drink it or combine it with fruits to make smoothie. On the other hand, the consistency of yogurt is thicker and it cannot be drunk.
  1. Both yogurt and dairy kefir contains probiotics. Probiotics are beneficial bacteria and beneficial yeasts that are normally found in the intestine of humans. They restrict the growth of harmful bacteria which can cause diseases and also boosts the immune system of the body. Milk kefir contains three times the probiotics that are present in yogurt. When kefir is made, milk is generally fermented with a mixture of almost 20 various types of probiotic yeasts and bacteria. Since there is a higher probiotic count in milk kefir, it has more health benefits than yogurt. Your immune system will be boosted and you will stay healthy.
  1. The individuals who are totally lactose intolerant can tolerate milk kefir but they cannot tolerate yogurt. This is because the plenty of beneficial bacteria present in milk kefir would digest the lactose in the milk. Therefore the lactose that would be left in kefir is almost 1%. So lactose intolerant individuals can easily have milk kefir.
  1. Milk kefir contains plenty of beneficial yeasts such as Torula kefir and Saccharomyces kefir that eliminates the pathogenic yeasts from the body. They keep the intestine clean and healthy. These beneficial yeasts are not present in yogurt.
  1. Milk kefir is also easier to digest than yogurt because of the smaller curd size of kefir. This makes milk kefir a nutritious and ideal food for the elderly people, babies and people having chronic digestive disorders.
Kefir fermentation

Kefir is a fermented milk product similar to yogurt

Though yogurt is a more popular food, you must try milk kefir because of its plenty of health benefits. You will surely notice improvement in your digestive health. It is better to have yogurt and milk kefir in plain form than in fruit flavors.

Kefir grains versus Kefir ferment

Kefir Grains versus Kefir Starter:
Which Should You Opt For ?

To prepare your milk kefir, you may use kefir grains or commercial powdered kefir starter. This article will show you the advantages and disadvantages of using both.

Powdered Kefir Starter

Kefir starter (powdered) is produced commercially. You can buy this kefir starter as a multi-pack or single pack. This preparation contains limited probiotic, which are listed on its packet in the “ingredients” section. Powdered starter ought to be refrigerated.

Why use a Kefir starter ?

Powdered starter is always easier to use and therefore appropriate choice for beginners. It is almost always prepared in sterile environment, then cultured commercially. The benefit is that the ingredients consist of a comprehensive list of all these beneficial yeasts and probiotic bacteria contained in a product. If you have chosen a powdered starter, you know which beneficial organisms are being used and ingesting. You may buy individual sachets of pre-made commercial kefir at a cheap price as a matter of fact.
Cons

The downside is that you can’t keep reusing the cultures. At the most and depending on brands, you might get about six batches out of the sachet of the commercial kefir starter. Be aware of the number of recaptures of your sachet can be considerably lesser than six. In the long term, commercial culture starter ends up being more expensive than traditional kefir grains.

One sachet is added to milk for one typical batch of your kefir. Eventually the milk stops culturing with a sachet of the starter culture. But you are going to get a load of kefir before it happens. Each product differs in volume.

Kefir Grains

Kefir grains happen to be way fascinating than the powder. To see them clump, multiply, and function is absolutely stunning.
Kefir grains resemble cauliflower florets. They are a well blended mixture of beneficial yeasts and probiotic bacteria in a base of sugar, fat and protein. These “grains” however, don’t contain any sort of cereal. However, they generally contain dairy, especially milk casein. Non-dairy alternatives of the milk-based grains are available these days. These may also be used for preparing water kefir or coconut kefir. Kefir grains are irregular shaped small crumbs, which are found to stick together, like the cauliflower florets.

Why opt for Kefir grains?
The main advantage of these kefir grains is that they are reusable over and over again, provided you store these grains in a proper manner. If you have done so, they are going to last forever. In the long-term, this makes the grains worth the money.

Another benefit of these grains is that typically they consist of a larger and of course diverse range of beneficial yeasts and probiotic bacteria than the kefir starter, the powdered ones. The actual species as well as the strains of bacteria in the grains will vary and depend on geographic locations. Finally, similar to the powdered starter, the traditional grains are easily usable.

Cons
The basic drawback of the traditional kefir grains is the time required in their preparation and storage. Once the kefir has been prepared, one has to retain the grains. In preparing those for storing you ought to rinse with cold water, keep them in prescribed containers and cover using water.
The initial outlay may be another deterrent to kefir grains. You might not be sure if you will prefer kefir and you may think that the cost of being high. The best thing is to purchase a single sachet of the commercial starter or buy ready-made kefir milk. Home prepared milk kefir always tastes way better than the bought kefir.
Details about the species or strains of the probiotic organisms in the kefir grains are usually unavailable. You will thus not know the exact probiotic bacteria or the exact beneficial yeasts present in the homemade kefir.
If you’re willing to go for the ‘live’ kefir grains, they’ll be sent by post, in little milk.  If you want to order from abroad, the kefir grains will then be freezed and dried. So, hurry up, decide which would be the ideal option for you and prepare kefir to maintain a healthy you and a healthy family. Cheers.

How to make Water Kefir ?

How to make Water kefir ?

Water kefir (generally pronounced as keh-FEER) isn’t as popular as is milk kefir. But it’s basically the same concept. Moreover, it’s easy and also relatively quicker to make, additionally providing an abundance of probiotic for improving digestive health.

Water kefir is basically a fermented beverage that is teeming with probiotic bacteria which is highly beneficial to us. It is simple and at the same time quick to prepare. Once brewed, it tastes absolutely delicious. Small children enjoy it too. It possesses a slight sweetness to crisp, yeasty, earthy flavor, depending on how it has been prepared. Sometimes if the yeasts are more in the brew then it contains a small amount of alcohol. It is a bit fizzy when bottled.

Water kefir is not only a wonderful source of the beneficial bacteria; but also consists of a variety of organic acids, enzymes and a wide range of vitamins like vitamin K, B vitamins as well as folic acid (2). It is something your family and you can use for your skin daily or drink daily.

Here’s a step by step guide of how to make water kefir

 

  • Dissolve one third cup of sugar in a cup of water in a pot on the stove. Allow it to cool slightly, then add three cups of water to it. Pour over this mixture in a half gallon jar (mason) and add one and half cups of water again (so that this jar is filled up to the 6 cup mark).
  • If the water is at room temperature, pour one third cup of kefir grains (water).
  • Add about some drops of lemon juice. Cover using a coffee filter or a tea towel and secure using any rubber band.
  • Leave this in a warm place for about 24 up to about 48 hours. The longer it is left, the less sweet it is going to be.
  • Taste your water kefir daily to check if it has reached the desired sweetness. If it does, strain the grains on placing the plastic strainer on some other mason jar and pour this kefir through it.
  • Use plastic strainers as some metals can be reactive, thus not recommended for using with the kefir grains.
  • Store grains in sugar water blend in the fridge or use to begin another batch of homemade water kefir.
  • As the kefirgrains are removed, a second fermentation would make it perfect.
  • During the second fermentation add fruit (dried or fresh) or you can also add fruit juice for that making it flavorsome.
  • Rather than using a coffee filter or towel to cover its top, place a plastic wrap on the mouth and on the lid. It will keep the air out and permit to form bubbles.
  • Leave this water kefir totally covered for 24 to about 48 hours. Strain out fruit pieces. Then pour into a clean bottle or container.
  • Store inside a fridge.

Water kefir ingredients

 

How to Make Milk Kefir ?

Make Milk Kefir at home ?

Milk Kefir (usually pronounced as keh-FEER) is basically a slightly carbonated but delicious milk beverage, fermented and similar to buttermilk or yogurt. Kefir is nothing other than fermented milk (room temperature) with the kefir grains for almost 24 hours. It has amazing health benefits, flavorsome and is endured well, even by person who is lactose intolerant. It’s easier to prepare than yogurt because it involves no heating/ incubating. Moreover, kefir has comparatively a larger spectrum of probiotic when compared to yoghurt. The sustainable, reusable grains make it economical.

With the popularity of kefir comes misinformation accompanied with deceiving products. Authentic milk kefir is only made with live kefir grains, instead of any form of pre-made or powder (or store purchased kefir). A kefir that is available in stores is mere imitations. Real and healthy kefir can be made only with experience at home.

The Basic ingredients

  • 500ml glass jar similar to any Kilner jar
  • A tablespoon of kefir grains
  • Fresh milk

Milk kefir grains

How to prepare milk kefir

  • Pour the milk kefir grains into a glass jar. Fill two third of the jar with fresh milk. Cover it using a cloth or lid the jar. (If you are putting the lid on it, don’t fill above two thirds)
  • Leave the contents at room temperature up to about 24 hours. 48 hours makes it thicker, and sourer, 12 hours makes it sweeter and thinner.
  • The temperature affects how quickly this culture works. As a result, during the summer months, milk kefir ferments faster.
  • Once it has been ready, strain the kefir in a jar.
  • While fermenting, the kefir grains float on top of the milk with cream. So stir to mix the solids and the liquids, gently using a wooden spoon. That way it gets easier to strain. Use the clean wooden spoon or hands for scooping the culture from this kefir (it is easy separate and feel from liquids).
  • Kefir culture gives birth to a polysaccharide substance which is jelly like and develops around grains, looking ‘gloopy’. Its name is kefiran and it bears unique properties. As you scoop the kefir grains you might find them to be coated with a substance which is a gel like. Providing a good stir to the kefir distributes the kefiran and it also contributes to the thickness. (This is, however variable, some strains produce a lot while others not that much.)

Note for Cleanliness and Storage of Milk Kefir

The post is straining, these grains are to be placed back in a jar without washing. Fresh milk is to be poured to the grains for making another batch. Ensure everything you use is well cleaned (jars, hands and implements). You wouldn’t surely like to contaminate a living culture. Store the prepared kefir in your fridge, in any glass jar. You may keep adding new batches of milk kefir to the jar and shake to mix.

link : kefir

Kefir grains can be stressed, what can I do ?

Below I will explain how to start best, incase of Water kefir



First, what is the optimal kefir grains to water ratio ? 
Kefir will usually starts to yeast between a ratio from 1:10 to 1:18. This means that 1 tablespoon of kefir grains will ferment at about 1 cup of sugar water and may increase over time to a ratio of 01:24 (= 1 tablespoon kefir grains in 1,5 cup of water). For starters, try using a ratio of water to kefir grains of about 1:16 to 1:18. We note that in the winter the kefir grains grow less rapidly than in the summer. In summer kefir grains can grow about 300% grow within 48 hours, while in winter an increase of 5% may be normal. It is also appropriate for starters NOT to begin immediately with dried fruit. Water kefir grains need time to adapt to their new environment and change of foods. Therefore we start with a sugar solution without the addition of dried fruit.


What is the optimal water to sugar ratio for water kefir ?


The optimal ratio is dissolved about 5 to 10% sugar in water, which is approximately 1 tablespoon sugar per 1 cup of water. Make sure the sugar is well dissolved. Please use unrefined sugar, often dark in color and may have a slightly salty taste because of the minerals present. These minerals are essential to obtain a good kefir culture.
Provide an ideal temperature of 18º to 28ºC, even when creating a new batch, this is important. Customize tempered sugar water to its environment (room temperature) before mixing with the kefir grains. 
Above tips may be useful as a starter, but nothing stands in your way to start finding the ideal proportions.

water kefir grains

Good luck