So what is probiotic? Usually we tend to be afraid of bacteria and our body thrives to keep the bad bacteria out. But there are also good bacteria which helps us. Those are called as probiotics and the drinks loaded with such probiotics are called as probiotic drinks. Yogurt is one of the vastly used probiotic drink. While yogurt contains just 2-7 types of probiotics, kefir contains 10-34 types of probiotics. Kefir is nowadays available at some speciality stores. The most common probiotic drink available is Yakult, which I haven’t tried so far. But the problem with store bough ones is the added flavours and preservatives and sugar.
For me anything which can be tried at home is always a great yes. After starting my diet, I came to know about kefir from the FB group Arogyam and Nalvalvu. Then I read a lot about its benefits. Finally I was ready for making it at home, but the main hurdle was the kefir grains we need to make kefir. It is not easily available and those cultures available were so expensive. But there are so many good souls in the group who share it with others. I came across Mr. Muthukumar who is a part of the group and is an ardent Paleo follower. He even has a shop to provide paleo ingredients at a cheaper rate in Madurai. Only after we visited him, we got some thorough knowledge about paleo. The beauty of the group and its members is that they provide completely free information and give diet charts based on our individual blood reports. So one fine day Mr. Muthukumar gave us some kefir grains and I was so happy that I could make it at home. I tried the store bought kefir previously, but it was a little sour to our taste.
I can write a lot about kefir but to make everything short I will go directly to the making of kefir. There are so many interesting articles available in the net which you can read to know more about kefir benefits. Kefir grains need delicate handling. It should never come in contact with metals. So we use glass bottles, nylon strainers and wooden spoons for the procedure. The milk used must be straight from dairy. Never use pasteurised milk. And no need of boiling too. Just use raw milk to make kefir. The beauty of kefir is it can be consumed by lactose intolerant persons too. It takes 24 hours to make kefir. And after a week, the grains start growing. The amount of grain increases and you can even share it with your friends. This has become Sruti’s favourtie drink this summer. It is just one more step for her to a healthy lifestyle. You can use kefir to make delicious recipes too. I will try to post some recipes in future.
These are kefir grains. Though they are named grains, they don’t resemble grains. It is just the culture for fermenting milk.
Take a clean glass jar and add milk. You can start with 500 ml of raw milk. Add one table spoon of grains to 500 ml. Mix it well with a wooden spoon. Do not use metal spoons.
Kefir needs air so it should not be sealed tight. Use a clean cotton cloth and some bands to secure the cloth. Place it on your kitchen shelf and leave it for 24 hours undisturbed.
The next day, you can see that the milk looks thick and yogurt like. You can even see some empty spaces between.
Give it a nice stir with the wooden spoon. The kefir is thinner than normal yogurt.
Use a nylon strainer to filter the kefir milk. Use single filter. Do not use the double layered nylon filter. It would be very tough to filter it out. The nylon mesh should have larger holes. And you need to gently stir the kefir to drain it out. It takes time and it will surely test your patience. But it is worth the effort.
The drained kefir resembles thick buttermilk.
Transfer to glasses and serve immediately. It is such a delicious and healthy drink.