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Water for Fermentation

We cannot stress this enough… your water must be pure! For cheese, kombucha, water kefir, veggies, sourdough…obtain good quality water. You are feeding living organisms, and those bacteria and yeasts are crucial to the fermentation process. Chemical additives like chlorine, chloramine and fluoride will harm your cultures. The best water in my opinion is one filtered with a good quality filtration system that takes out the bad stuff (chlorine, chloramine, fluoride) but leaves in the good stuff (i.e. minerals). Stay away from the cheaper filtration systems like a Brita or your fridge filter…the additive list is not extensive as to what they filter. Be sure to research and find the list of chemicals and additives that that particular filter will...

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MA 11 + Animal Rennet = Chevre Cheese-a-licious!

Making your own homemade Chevre is rewarding and delicious. If you haven’t tried it yet, let’s go! Chevre can be made with multiple cultures: Aromatic B, MA 11, and of course the Chevre culture. The Chevre culture is all-in-one, requiring no additional rennet. The Aromatic B and MA 11 cultures will need either vegetable rennet tablets, liquid vegetable rennet, or liquid animal rennet. I have made chevre with the veggie rennet tablets, so today I’m working with animal rennet to coagulate my MA 11 infused raw goat milk! The MA 11 comes with four packets, but you’ll only need one for an ENTIRE gallon’s worth of milk! If you start in the early evening, it will be ready by the end of the next day! Here’s how I...

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Sourdough Coconut Biscuits

These are the tastiest little “biscuits” made from a gluten-free starter. Be warned, it can get very sour, so if you like that, this is for you! This is not a light weight contender, though…it’s a bit on the heftier side, but oh so delicious! You can do this with our NW Ferments established, dried Gluten Free Sourdough Starter, which is by far the easiest, or you can try making your own wild starter with some water kefir or kombucha. Either way, once it is started, you will make sure to feed it so that it is a thick consistency. The recipe I used is from Sharon Kane’s The Art of Gluten-Free Sourdough Baking…she’s done so much hard work, so why reinvent the wheel?...

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Water Kefir: Pop and Fizz!

The second fermentation is a step many don’t realize needs to happen before you can get the carbonation automatically assumed there when you drink water kefir. You can definitely achieve pop and fizz naturally! Let’s pick up where we left off last – you’ve strained your grains from its 48 hour ferment. You can do fruit juice or fruit – we’re doing frozen fruit. On hand, cherries! Plop them in your finished water kefir…make sure it’s in a mason jar + lid/ring that will ensure a good seal. With fresh/frozen fruit, sometimes you can achieve pop and fizz is just one day. You can also put it in a Grolsch-Style flip top lidded bottle, but it’s super hard to get that fruit out of...

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Troubleshooting Your Water Kefir Grains

From time to time your Water Kefir Grains might give you a run for your money (and patience). Here are some common troubleshooting issues. My grains are sluggish! What do I do? Raisins! Add a small handful of raisins to your next culturing batch, ensuring the raisins are free of oil and sulfur. This batch will be sweeter since raisins are naturally sweet, and the grains will feast upon the natural sugar. Fun fact, if you eat the raisins after the culturing time, they won’t be sweet anymore. Also, because of the extra fruit sugar, extra carbonation should develop. Oh, and raisins add a little boost of nutrition! You can also do a “rinse and rest” where you gently rinse grains in filtered water...

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