How I Make Kefir
I have been making raw milk kefir in place of the SCD yogurt mainly because of simplicity and wanting to get the extra benefits of raw milk. I tried making raw milk yogurt a few times and it just wasn’t as good as the usual SCD yogurt (milk warmed up to 180 first). I do make the SCD yogurt every now and then with sheep milk as a treat.
For making kefir, the process is pretty simple once you have your kefir grains and some milk.
- wooden spoon
- cloth or paper towel
- kefir grains
Pour milk into a jar. Add about 2 tbsp of kefir grains per liter of milk using a wooden spoon. In the photo above, I put two chunks of that size for 1 liter. Stir gently.
Cover the jar with a cloth or paper towel, secured in place by a mason jar ring or elastic band (see pic below). Keep the jar on the counter for 12 hours.
Remove the kefir grains using a wooden spoon.
Leave the jar of half fermented kefir on the counter for another 12 hours (for 24 hours total) covered with cloth. After fermenting, cover the jar with a lid and place in the fridge.
Storing kefir grains
Store the kefir grains in a small jar of milk, in the fridge for up to a week. You can freeze them in milk as well to keep for longer periods. I just keep mine in the fridge and give them fresh milk and a gentle stir once every week or so.
If you want your kefir grains to multiply quickly, keep the grains on the counter either making continuous batches of kefir or just supplying new milk to them every couple days.
Kefir grains are sensitive to metal so don’t use metal spoons, bowls, or strainers. I use glass jars and wooden spoons when handling them.
I found kefir grains by contacting my local Weston A Price Foundation chapter and asking chapter members if anyone had some to share. You can also check local classified ads or ask around at farmers markets.
Kefir will ferment a bit faster in warmer temperatures, but doesn’t require a source of heat like yogurt does. In the winter, I place my jar on the top of the fridge or close to the stove so it gets a bit of extra heat.
Some people use a plastic strainer and rinse kefir grains under water. I found this step unnecessary as long as I give the milk a gentle stir once the grains are added.
I find kefir is best used within a week. If kept longer, it will very slowly keep fermenting until it’s quite strong.
On SCD this is considered an advanced food but I wish I had tried it sooner. I found it does help with carbohydrate tolerance and Candida symptoms. It’s worth trying after a couple months on SCD just start very slowly with a spoonful at first and increase the dose from there. I flavour mine just like yogurt, with honey and berries.