NOTE: if you're not planning to start your Milk Kefir right away, store it in the refrigerator until you are ready.
You will need:
- one quart canning jar or other glass jar
- coffee filter or paper towel to cover jar, and elastic
- band to secure cover
- wooden or plastic spoon
- fine mesh plastic strainer (no metal)
- cow or goat milk (avoid ultra pasteurized or UHT milk)
- Milk Kefir grains
- Add the Milk Kefir grains to 2 cups milk in your jar. Cover with coffee filter & secure with elastic band.
- Allow to culture at room temp - 68° to 78° F. is ideal. Choose a draft-free place, out of direct sunlight, where your Milk Kefir won't be disturbed.
- Check in 24 hours. The kefir will be ready when it has thickened and has a pleasantly sour smell. Your first batch may have an off flavor - if so, the liquid can be discarded or used in a recipe after grains have been removed. It sometimes takes a cycle for the grains to wake back up.
- When your Milk Kefir is ready, strain the grains from the finished kefir (stirring it with a spoon first will make it strain easier). Put the grains in fresh milk and start your next batch. You can increase the amount of milk to 1 quart.
As your grains increase in volume, you can continue to increase the amount of milk. The goal is to keep the ratio of grains to milk that produces kefir to your taste. Longer culturing times make a more sour product, shorter times make a milder product.
Your finished Milk Kefir can be enjoyed as is, or blended with fruit and/or honey for a delicious smoothie. Extra grains can be shared with friends, eaten, or dried and saved for future use.