Straining The Kefir

Yes, this blog post is all about straining the Milk Kefir from the Kefir grains. This is done after the Kefir has been fermented till the desired tartness and the main...

Yes, this blog post is all about straining the Milk Kefir from the Kefir grains. This is done after the Kefir has been fermented till the desired tartness and the main purpose is for you to strain the Kefir grains from the Milk Kefir. If not, you will find drinking the Milk Kefir a bit difficult with the Kefir grains in the way. Furthermore, you will need the Kefir grains in order for you to make more batches of Kefir. Thus, straining is the best method. Some Kefir makers use a spoon to scoop the Kefir grains from the milk Kefir but I find that method a bit too tedious and you will end up with a lot of Kefir grains still in the Milk Kefir. Eating or consuming Kefir grains is good for your health but you might find that the number of grains you have gets lesser and lesser. So, I would definitely recommend you to strain your Kefir.

The straining method is pretty easy and straightforward. All you need is a plastic strainer or a stainless steel strainer. You can find these items easily in the supermarkets and stores. Don’t worry about using stainless steel when you are straining your Kefir. Stainless steel is very inert when in contact with acid and thus very suitable to use for straining Kefir. However for me, I will be using the plastic tea strainer because it is cheap and easily available. I bought mine for 90 cents at Sheng Siong. Anyway, after obtaining your strainer, you should pour the contents of the Kefir (after it has fermented to the desired tartness) onto the strainer and let the Kefir flow through. Give it a little shake now and then, but not too rough so as not to damage /injure the Kefir grains. It will take a few minutes for the Kefir to drain away from the strainer. Do note that if you use full cream milk, you will get a thicker Kefir. So, expect a little more difficulty in straining the Milk Kefir made from full cream milk.For me, I normally make my Kefir using full cream milk. For the health conscious, you can of course brew your Kefir using skimmed milk or low fat milk. It should work out fine as well. Just a little runnier.

Photo of straining the milk Kefir. The little bubbles on the top is due to the carbon dioxide trapped by the curds during the fermentation process. And the blobs of white stuff is the Kefir grains! Yes, those probiotic jewels that create the probiotic milk Kefir. Without them, we will have no milk Kefir at all.

You can see the milk Kefir being drained into the bowl below. Slowly but surely, we are getting it. If you have a bigger container, you can rest the strainer on top and let the Kefir drain by itself. For me, the bowl I have below is a bit too small and I have to stand and wait till the Kefir is completely drained. It is indeed a little tedious so I think I will be getting myself a bigger wide-mouth container. It makes straining Kefir much easier. Not that it is tough in the first place, but if you can make it easier, why not?

Wooohooo! Delicious milk Kefir!

There, the Kefir grains themselves. They do look like small white cauliflowers.  Sometimes it might be difficult to differentiate the Kefir grains from the curds that are formed during the fermentation process. Test by feeling the grains. The Kefir grains should feel a little slimy but firm. The curds will just get squashed when you press onto them. If you look carefully at the photo above, you can see thatthere are curds mixed with the Kefir grains. Not too worry, it is fine. All you need to do is to pour what you have into a clean container and add more milk to it. And you re-do the process over and over again to make more Kefir.

The amount of grains you see here is just part of the total amount of Kefir grains I have. The actual amount of Kefir grains I have right now is about twice as much. With this much amount, I can make about 1 litre of Kefir per batch easily.

Photo of a Kefir grain. Yes, I bite my nails. Bad habit but this is one which I still can’t get rid off. Don’t worry though, I washed my hands thoroughly before I handled the Kefir grains. Hey, being clean is part and parcel of making kefir, just like when you are making yogurt and other fermented products.

They have grown quite significantly since I got them.  Don’t they look plump and happy? Treat the grains well and they will grow and grow and grow. And you can drink Kefir all day!

Look at the delicious milk Kefir! I normally don’t ripe my Kefir, so I consume them immediately after straining. But from what I read from Dom’s site, ripened Kefir has additional benefits. Please visit Dom’s Kefir site for more information. In fact, if you face any problem with making Kefir, you should read Dom’s site. It contains almost all the information you need to make Kefir.

Glass of milk Kefir, all ready to be drank by yours truly. Due to time and work constrains, I normally strain my Kefir in the evenings and consume them immediately.

And to all my readers, good health and wishing you a happy Lunar New Year! I hope this post has made you understand a little more about the process about making Kefir. It isn’t a difficult thing to do. And Kefir is considered to be a much more superior health giving product than yogurt.