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What is Kefir?
Kefir is considered as one of the best probiotics in the world as it contains more strains of good bacteria than yogurt and curd. Kefir is a beverage that contains beneficial microorganisms such as yeast and bacteria. It is a refreshing beverage that can be made using milk, water, and coconut milk or coconut water.
Traditionally, milk kefir drink is one of the most popular types of kefir that is made from milk kefir grains. It contains various enzymes and acids that are beneficial for the body. But if you wish to avoid dairy you can also make water kefir that is as beneficial as the conventional milk kefir.
Because of the fermentation process, it is found that kefir may taste somewhat carbonated. This fermented dairy product is identical to yogurt; however, it has a thin texture unlike that of yogurt which is thick. The kefir grains look similar to that of small cauliflower florets.
What is Milk Kefir?
Milk kefir is a probiotic dairy beverage prepared by fermenting milk with milk kefir grains, which is actually a mixture of beneficial yeast and bacteria.
Milk kefir has gained considerable popularity in the natural health food sector primarily because of its nutrient content and the gut-friendly bacteria it contains.
Milk is exposed to the bacteria for 24 hours after which the grains are strained out. Milk kefir cultures are a widely commercialized product and more rigorously researched than its lighter counterpart water kefir culture.
The type of milk used in making the kefir directly impacts the nutritional content of the kefir. Apart from that, kefir milk, in general, is rich in amino acids, vitamin K peptides and organic compounds which help in maintaining good health.
What is Water Kefir?
Water kefir is a probiotic drink made from water kefir grains which contain a reliable source of yeast and healthy bacteria. Water kefir drink tastes like a natural and light refreshing soda.
It’s very quick and easy to prepare this beverage and once brewed; it has a beautiful flavor that even the children enjoy having. Depending on its preparation, it can produce a slightly sweet though crisp, earthy and yeasty flavor.
Water kefir drink is a perfect replacement for milk kefir. Whereas milk kefir thrives on lactose, water kefir thrives on sugars.
What is Coconut Kefir?
Coconut kefir drink is prepared by fermenting coconut water with coconut kefir grains. Coconut water is generally rich in nutrients like potassium, mineral and essential vitamins and low in fat. It also contains powerful electrolytes which is very important for the function of body cells.
So when such a nutrition rich coconut water if fermented, it also becomes a powerful probiotic that helps in digestion and nurture our immune system. This coconut kefir drink with nutritions like potassium will help you to improve your bone density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis and stroke.
Here we are talking about the tender coconut water and not the coconut milk that is prepared with grated coconut from a mature brown coconut.
What is Kombucha Scoby?
Kombucha is a fizzy fermented tea beverage consumed for its unique taste and variety of health benefits. There are not as many health drinks that are as flexible as Kombucha to make various flavors based on one’s taste. So no wonder this is famous among the diet and health conscious people around the globe.
Kombucha tea is prepared by fermenting sweetened black or green tea with a mother kombucha scoby (also called as kombucha mushroom) which stands for symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast.
Fermenting happens when the yeast in the scoby breaks down the sugar in the tea and helps to release the good bacteria. During the fermenting process, it releases acetic acid that has the ability to kill harmful microorganisms and candida yeasts.
It is always better to use green tea over black tea for making kombucha tea. Because it contains bioactive compounds like polyphenols that act as antioxidants. Antioxidants helps in fighting free radicals and toxins that are damaging your cells.
- Powerful probiotics than yogurt
- Contains source of many nutrients
- Improves lactose tolerance
- Improves your gut health and digestion
- Improve bone strength and lowers risk of osteoporosis
- Helps for weight loss and lowers risks of obesity
- Promotes skin health and fights the effects of aging
- Treat digestive problems and helps to cure irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Boosts immune system and your energy
- May help you to detoxify your body
- Can cure your acne problems
- Acts as antibiotic and antifungal properties
- May reduces insulin resistance, balances blood sugar levels and lowers risks of diabetes
- May help to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol
- May protect you from allergy issues and asthma symptoms
- Contains high % amount of calcium, protein, vitamin B-12, vitamin K and biotin
- May help relieve stress and anxiety issues
Frequently Asked Questions
The hardest thing about making kefir is finding the good quality grains. We had tested so many grains on the market and found the right ones for our personal use.
As our health got better, we started culturing at home and sharing it with the people who is looking for the best kefir grains india. We are happy, as we are making a little contribution to create a healthy society in India.
You can order kefir grains online from us. We will guide you, till you make your perfect kefir drink!
According to TechSci research, the probiotic market in India will grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 19.8 percent by 2020.
Select your interested kefir grains or kombucha scoby product in our website and click "Add to Cart" button, it will redirect you to the "Checkout Page" where you have to make the payment and fill your complete shipping address with pin code.
We use BPA free plastic container to pack kefir grains and kombucha scoby, sealed tightly with leakage proof cap for safe transit. We offer free shipping, and double mesh strainer along with the product for the benefit our customers to start the process immediately.
We usually dispatch your order within 24 hours (except holidays) and will pack only just right in time at the date of dispatch. We give our 100% assurance on the quality of our kefir grains as our product will be live and active upto 15 days during transit.
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Do not confuse between these two different types of kefir. Milk kefir is obtained with the help of culture grown in milk, while water kefir is fermented in water with the addition of sugar.
- People often confused about milk kefir and water kefir and which one to buy. Milk kefir is obtained with the help of culture grown in milk, while water kefir is fermented in water with the addition of sugar.
- People who have no problems with dairy food, believe that milk kefir is more useful, because it contains vitamins and minerals that you will never find in water kefir.
- Besides, water kefir has smaller amount of calcium and magnesium than that found in dairy kefir.
- And it is true, because water kefir has only about 10-15 strains of useful bacteria and yeasts, while its milk brother has from 30 to 50 strains of the live bacteria and yeasts.
- On the other hand, being a good source of useful bacteria and microbes, water kefir can serve as an excellent alternative to milk probiotics. Therefore, it can be used by people with lactose intolerance.
- Milk kefir grains are white in colour, while water kefir grains are almost transparent.
- Concerning preparation of the beverages, they are very much alike, but some people consider preparing water kefir easier.
- As to the taste, lovers of sour taste of dairy products prefer milk kefir. And those who have sweet tooth like sweetness and various flavors of water kefir.
- To conclude, if you are dairy or lactose intolerant, you can try water kefir. Otherwise, you can consume both in alternative times so that you will not miss the goodness of anything.
Kombucha is a slightly sour tasting beverage that is made by culturing kombucha scoby with a combination of sugar and tea. It has a fizzy, apple cider vinegar like taste that is on the sour side. Both are beneficial in their own way. But in order to make a choice between these two, there are some things that should be considered.
- Although both kefir and kombucha consist of beneficial microbes kefir is rich in lactic acid bacteria.
- The probiotic content of kefir is more than kombucha whereas kombucha is more of a digestive aid.
- Milk kefir contains calcium whereas kombucha doesn’t. Although kombucha is rich in caffeine as it is made from tea.
- The enzymes and acids in kombucha have a stronger effect than those in kefir.
- Kombucha Tea is dairy free, so it is a better option for people with a lactose intolerance, although the lactose content of milk becomes negligible after fermentation via kefir.
- Kefir is sweeter than kombucha which has a fizzy, sour taste. So, the choice of beverage greatly depends on your taste.
It is often assumed that Kefir and Yogurt are one and the same just because they are identical in appearance. Well, that’s not true.
If they both were to be same dairy products, why would we have separate nomenclature for them?
There are myriad differences between both the dairy products in terms of how each is cultured, the process of preparation, bacteria used in their culturing, taste as well as consistency.
While it is important to understand the stages included in their preparation, it is equally important for each of us to understand the various health benefits of Kefir and Yogurt not withstanding similarities in health benefits of both.
Kefir is absolutely safe to consume by babies and children in order to have a healthy system.
After the age of 3 years, they can consume it if they like the tangy taste. As Kefir contains high nutritious values, it can benefit the kids to attain the right quantity of vitamins and minerals needed by one.
Children can consume it just like they have milk and such fermented drink will have more effect on them and hence improve the immune system.
Kefir provides them with the necessary nutrient that helps them thoroughly throughout their growing years.
Kefir is good for diabetes management. It helps to slow down and control the rate of glycemic index.
This brewed beverage is high in nutrient content and helps in the promotion of gut microbes that controls the cellular absorption of blood sugar.
The sole reason for controlling of blood level is the production of lactic acid during the process of fermentation and lowers the pH level of blood.
Kefir is highly recommended for diabetes owing to its tangy nature and can be used as a substitute for vinegar and lemon.
Kefir contains probiotic bacteria that controls the body glucose levels and is a great healer for diabetes.
Consuming this fermented beverage on a regular basis appears as a therapeutic treatment for diabetic patients as it possess the qualities of bringing down the glucose levels.
Yes! When Kefir is made with the process of fermentation, the kefir cultures/bacteria breaks down the lactose and the result bacteria produced is the probiotic cultures.
Hence the combination of the long fermentation time (15-18 hours) along with the specific kefir cultures ensures that Kefir is 99% lactose free. Even though that 1% of lactose remains, it is safe to consume by lactose intolerant individuals.
Milk kefir has a tart yogurt like flavor and is even called the champagne of milk. Its taste can also be compared to that of Italian soda- made of cream and carbonated water.
If you care for them properly, kefir grains can be used unlimited times to make Kefir. They have an unlimited life span if you follow the instructions and maintain hygiene.
They look similar to tiny cauliflower florets. When you take a closer look, they seem to have a pattern similar to that of a brain or corals.
A simple test is to nudge the container to see if the milk is set in a thin gel manner as compared to how watery milk is.
Kefir ferments in a top to bottom manner so if the bottom looks like runny milk, let it sit for a few more hours. When you start to see bubbles trapped in the gel like substance, which will increase till there is a tiny separation across the bottom of the container.
If you stir the kefir occasionally, this separation is seen across the middle of the container. Once the complete separation is seen, the kefir is ready!
You can use both farm fresh or pasteurised milk.
Buy farm fresh milk has to be boiled and cooled to room temperature before fermenting.
Ceramic, food grade plastic or glass containers are recommended. Nylon, wood or plastic strainers are advised to filter the grains.
1 tablespoon of kefir grains will ferment upto 500ml of milk and in 24 hours. Based on the weather condition of your location the time may vary.
If your kefir is separating or ends up being too sour before the usual straining time, decrease the amount of grains or increase the amount of milk.
If you want to make a lot of kefir with just a few grains, keep adding more milk without straining. The kefir combined with the grains will acts as a starter and quickly turn your milk to kefir.
If you prefer a sour kefir, the ratio of grains should be higher. If you prefer a less sour- mild version, decrease the amount of grains.
There is no specific time to drink kefir, we have to choose the best possible time to have kefir to get maximum benefits. As per the research report, It's good idea to drink during night time after your dinner, just before goind to sleep.
Use a wooden, nylon, or plastic strainer. Pour the kefir through the strainer (shake it or use a spoon to help speed up the process) till the grains are strained out.
Milk kefir grains are not fragile so using some force to push the grains won’t harm them in any way.
Keeping the grains in a clean unbleached tea bag or muslin bag is also a good idea as it avoids filtering out the grains as you can just pull it out.
You can even use your hands to remove the kefir grains out and this won’t damage them either.
A lot of kefir experts recommend not washing the grains as they grow better and produce better quality kefir when not rinsed.
If you still want to rinse the grains, make sure to use non-chlorinated clean water. Swish them around in a bowl or water or hold them under a tap and pat dry.
When the kefir is fermented in or stored in a metallic container for prolonged hours, it can have a leaching effect on the metal. This is because the acid in the Kefir will react to the metal. Please refrain from using metal spoons as it might damage the grains while stirring.
Kefir grains need a stable environment with gradual and minimal temperature changes. If it is exposed to variable temperature then it can turn thin or grainy. If the kefir grains don’t seem to be adjusting and returning to producing normal kefir, the temperature in the environment needs to be adjusted.
In most cases temperature below 21°C or above 24°C or using low fat, lactose free or non-fat milk can change the texture of the kefir. So be a little patient and give time to your grains to adjust to the new medium.
Kefir grains consume lactose in milk in the process of turning milk into Kefir. But after a while they may run out of lactose/food. Hence if the grains are not fed fresh milk, they may become stressed, starve and eventually die.
Giving them a consistent supply of fresh milk by separating the Kefir grains and feeding them regularly is crucial to maintain healthy grains.
The range of temperature between 18°C to 28°C is the best functioning range. Temperature above 30°C can damage the fermentation process. It can actually ferment even inside you fridge where the temperature is low but the process will take a longer time.
If you live in very hot climate, you have to ensure that your kefir isn’t exposed to excessive heat. To do this, let your kefir ferment inside the refrigerator during the day and outside the fridge, during the night.
The best thing about Kefir is that it can be very forgiving. Strain it when you remember and feed them as you would normally.
The grains may consume the new milk quickly so it’s best to keep an eye on it and strain it when it appears to be ready (this may happen before the 24 hour period as well).
If you have forgotten to strain it for more than a week, let them re balance in 3-4 4 new batches and consume only the next batch after it has.
Consume kefir within 2 weeks of making it. It is best to drink it a day or 2 after straining it, bottling it and refrigerating it.
As this allows more Vitamin B to develop at the same time, the acid or alcohol content in the kefir does not go up.
The Kefir tends to develop a creamier consistency and a deeper flavor as well. The yeast and bacteria in the Kefir gives it the ability to stay well preserved for a long period. However the acetic or alcohol content will increase, causing it to get fizzy and sour over time.
Container that have been forgotten in the fridge for moths can smell like creamy wine or pickled milk. But it doesn’t mean that the kefir is rotten.
While moving the grains apart from each other, sticky threads can be seen hanging between them. This indicates that the kefir grains are growing and are healthy! However do not panic if you don’t see these threads as the lack of it doesn’t mean that they aren’t healthy.
While fermenting, the amount of carbon dioxide is what causes the kefir to increase in volume. Putting a lid on it will increase the carbonation of the kefir and hence makes it fizzier.
As the kefir grains require oxygen to thrive, using a breathable lid such as cheesecloth, paper towel etc. will be a better option.
This is also a safer option as the breathable lid will reduce the risk of built up carbon dioxide causing the glass container to explode. This accident usually occurs when a kefir container is filled to the brim or forgotten.
Just like fizzy drinks, kefir may burst out of the jar if kept inside a tightly shut container. It is a good idea to use a cheesecloth while placing the container in the fridge for a few days as it achieves the right amount of carbonation.
Do not fill your jar more than 2/3rd or 3/4th of the way. As the kefir will grow in volume, it needs space to expand.
Kefir should not be exposed to direct sunlight. The culture does not require light to ferment so keep it away from sunlight.