Wednesday, July 20, 2011

User Friendly Yogurts

I have 2 more new "pets"; Matsoni and Viili. Each different bacterial cultures that make milk into a yogurt...So easy to work with. Usually yogurt is fussy about temperature and the need to be left alone and still. But these two can be active at any reasonable temp, the warmer the better and they can be stirred, juggled and shook.

I have a pint of each. I eat what I want of each one, Viili is a little thicker and slight taste difference than Matsoni. When one of the pint jars is down by half, I add more raw milk about a cup and shake or stir it up with remaining yogurt and leave on counter at room temp. for about a day with loose lid. After 18 -24 hrs. I taste for sour; sweet means that the lactose, milk sugar is still too dominate and it needs more time. When sour is just right, I put it in the fridge to slow down action and then eat from that jar. I don't even have to use other jars. This is so easy and tasty. I will sell starters for these at $5.00. 801-765-4645

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Water Kefir

I have a new "pet". I consider all my microbe colonies "pets" have to feed them and nurture them to keep them alive and well and growing. In return they produce the amazing enzymes and vitamins so beneficial for health.

My new "pet" are water kefir pearls. They are so easy to feed and keep happy. Their water product is kinda like a natural soda pop. I tried to get photo big enough to see them at the bottom. They are crystal colored and the size of beans and stained brown due to the brown sugar.

You add these microbe colonies to pure water and some natural sugar. By pure water I mean,filtered water and chlorine-free and higher ph than neutral. I take city tap water a gallon at a time and fill my large glass container that has a bag of "prills" in the bottom, and cover with a clean cloth and let sit a few hours. While sitting, the chlorine is pushed out and evaporates and the "prills" raise the ph of the water to about 8.5. I pour off 3 quarts of water at a time into another container on my counter with a spigot and that is the water I use for all drinking, cooking and fermenting. "Prills" are magnesium crystals that do not dissolve. I've had my bag for about 2 years now and they are still working. I have a link to the website where you can order the "prills". It really is a great deal for about $20.

Water kefir pearls eat/consume sugar. You can use the plain, no nutrition white sugar, or more natural, dark sugars with organic compounds sill intact. I use succanant and agave.

To one quart pure water add
4 ounces of sugar, any combination you want

Stir to dissolve, add the kefir grains, cover and date and set on counter at room temperature for 1-2 days. How long it ferments depends on how sweet you want the taste. The longer fermentation the less sweet it becomes. When it has fermented to your taste, strain the pearls and start another quart or put them into cold storage in some pure water with just a little sugar. They should keep about a week but then take them out warm them up and prepare more sugar for them. I've noticed something fun about these kefir grains....they bounce up and down in the liquid as they consume the sugar. Maybe the milk kefir grains do that too but milk is opaque and I haven't seen them. These grains look like they are happy and dancing!

Well fermented water should be a little bubbly and slightly sweet.