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Monday, October 24, 2022

Kefir, second ferment

Well, I have exceeded my expectations with my kefir! I am so glad I purchased fresh kefir instead of dry, I'm sure I could have succeeded with the dry, but it would have taken me longer to get to the finished drink.

I think it took me an extra day at both ends, the first and second ferment, the reason being because the SkyCastle is on the cooler side, and cold temps slow down the activity of the kefir. I let the first ferment go for 4 days, I tasted it on days 2, 3 and 4. The point here is to get to a slight sour, yeasty, yet slightly sweet, it is complex. I watched so many YouTube videos, so many were tasting the first ferment, they described it so exquisitely, I wondered if I would be able to recognize when the first ferment was complete...
I had nothing to worry about, I was able to detect the flavor of a completed first ferment with no problems. I pulled out 3 bottles for the second ferment. 2 large Topo Chico bottles and one smaller bottle that originally contained a commercially available kefir water, the first one of its kind I tried.

I filled each bottle, leaving enough space to add juice, fruit and still enough head space for the carbonation to happen. I also started a second batch of kefir water, the kefir grains were apparently very happy, they had doubled in size and quantity. I was able to split off 2 batches to give away. 

I took the remaining kefir grains and started another batch. The first batch of water kefir that I drained went into the next bottles, I added grape juice to one, a mix of juice in another, and in the smaller bottle, I put in a couple of lemon slices. I capped them tightly and set aside for the second ferment.

It took about 3 days for the first bubbles to appear in the second ferment, by the 4th day, they were fizzy! I had been tasting them a little bit on each day, I placed the 2 larger bottles in the fridge, the smaller lemon flavored bottle didn't last long enough to be refrigerated.

I did notice the way the fermentation slowed in the cold and increased in the warmth, I had placed my second fermentation bottles near the wood stove, they really began to bubble vigorously. I didn't allow them to get too warm, I didn't want any accidents, explosions, or dead ferments. 

It turned out to be just enough, the end product was tasty, fizzy and all around fun to drink. I can't wait to have enough going to be able to drink as much as I wish. For now, I'll just keep working both ferments.

My second batch I added grape juice to one bottle, and apple cider to the second bottle, on the smaller bottle I stayed with the lemon slices. I expect to be able to start drinking those in a few days. 

If you live close by to me, ask me about getting a batch of kefir grains from me, otherwise, if you want to get the same ones I have, go here KEFIR LINK and order from Amazon, thanks!

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