Step 6: Ready to Strain

After 48 hours, you water kefir will be ready to be strained and fed once again.

When you are new to making water kefir, you may not know exactly what taste your looking for, but as you continue to make water kefir, you'll get a feel for when you need to strain the kefir. When it's over-fermented it tends to be sour and flat, while under-fermented water kefir tends to be too sweet. Somewhere right in the middle you catch a tangy, slightly sweet kefir (like a mild kombucha).

Many people expect water kefir to be very fizzy like a soda and are disappointed that it's so subtle. Carbonation takes place under anaerobic conditions (no air). You can easily increase the carbonation of you water kefir once you've strained it by bottling it in an air tight bottle (such as special beer and soda bottles). More on this in step 7.

TEMPERATURE: Temperature can greatly affect the speed of fermentation (it can take half as much time during the summer). Experiment and see what tastes right (and digests right) for you. They will not die if they're ready at 24 hours, but you strain at 48, so don't
worry too much!

A. Place your strainer over a bowl (stainless steel, wood or plastic -preferably with a pouring spout) and pour your entire water kefir ferment into the strainer.

B. Pick out any fruit or lemon. You can eat these (once your kefir is balanced), discard, or even keep in your bottled water kefir. You can also re-use fruit for one more ferment if
desired. If you used lemon, you can squeeze it into your strained kefir for a stronger lemon flavor if desired.

SURFACE: It's normal to see some grains, the dried fruit, foam and occasionally some 'scum' floating near the top (especially when using less refined sugars and/or dried fruits). It's also normal to see a perfectly clear surface, too. Sometimes this can indicate inactivity though - taste to see if it still tastes like flat, sweet sugar water - this indicates the grains did not convert much of the sugar.

View the pics below for what your finished water kefir may look like:
<p>Thanks for sharing this Water Kefir Recipe.... Have tried to make this at home. Am enjoying my first cup of Refreshing Calamansi Kefir drink ... hope to try making Water Kefir recipes using other Fruits for different delicious drinks for the kids specially at homes. </p>
Sounds delicious! water kefir is such an enjoyable beverage to flavor. :)<br>
<p>Thanks for this! :) Just a quick question, wouldn't honey kill the good bacteria, making the kefir 'just' a drink instead of a probiotic?</p>
Honey may kill some of the flora in the kefir but not most of it, because the drink still is viable and ferments after the addition of raw or pasteurized honey. Hope that helps!
<p>I was looking for a way to make my own actual kefir grains, without buying them from someone else?</p>
There isn't any way to replicate kefir grains. They have been passed down through the generations and cannot be re-created. Hope that helps!
<p>in making kefir milk I use whole milk and fermented for 2 days to get better results. here the parents we like the water of mineral water kefir fermented algae seed crystal japan mine. Indeed, the efficacy of water kefir has been felt by the parents we like to help lower the body's sugar, acid stomach, constipation. use of sugar just sprinkle not boiled with the addition of raisins will produce water kefir fresh flavors such as coconut or like the taste of cola. This is a way of taking care of my Japanese crystal algae. http://goo.gl/4dCN3Y</p><p>thank you for the opportunity in the article on this Japanese crystal algae.</p>
There is a cheap simple solution to the chlorine/chlorame problem. Adding a small quantity of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) to tap water reacts with the chloramine in with a half life of about 4 minutes. It is employed in dialysis processes for this purpose. I have used it on my own water kefir grains and have seen a ten-fold increase in grain volume. This confirms that the technique not only works, but produces no observable suppression of colony growth over time.
In the interest of, as you say, &quot;local, economical and responsible eating&quot;, I'd like to try and find Kefir grains here in Tulsa. We have a number of Indian groceries and a large Asian market. Am I likely to find them available in these kinds of places? It sounds like the process is very similar to how I make ginger ale at home. I'm excited to try making this new drink!
Fresh Kefir grains can be bought on eBay from reputable sellers who are not commercial companies and probably 'sharers'. Be sure they are selling fresh not dried. I am trying out my first batch and everything looks as should according to the long list of tips and recipes that came with the product. Good luck with yours.
Hi yoyology, I would check out kefir_making yahoo group. In their files section they have a database of users by location who are willing to share their grains (many are out-dated, but you can try posting and asking around on the forum, too!). I am sure you will find someone in Tulsa willing to share.
I am trying something similar that would be healthy for diabetic patients...<br><br>Without using sugar and without using kefir...<br><br>I boil in water some dried prunes. and a bunch of stevia leaves. Stevia leaves are a natural sugar substitute. But with an added feature: it seems to transform the sugar in the fruits or any other sugar into alcohol and because of that, to carbonate the drink in a week or so.<br><br>The drink I gues should be considered inside the same spectrum as this beatifully exposed by you.<br>I never knew that kefir could be used in such a fashion!<br><br>Thank you!<br>Alberto
Mexican tepache do not uses kefir (or tibicos, as we call them here). it is made usually by leaving pineapple (normally leftovers, like center and skin) in water with brown sugar (called piloncillo when comes in cone shaped chunks). <br> <br>Another comment is that the kefir water tastes like a very soft tepache, while made from very different sources.
where did you find your resealable drinking bottles?
You can find these by googling 'flip cap bottles' - Amazon and other major online retailors have many choices. You can sometimes find them locally too at specialty wine and beer shops, or sometimes even kitchen supply stores.

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Bio: We grow, research, photograph and offer nourishing, time-honored organic cultures such as Milk Kefir, Water Kefir, Kombucha, and Sourdough. We enjoy drinking (and eating!) the ... More »
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