The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Lazy kefir culture

Scooping out kefir grains

Red-shouldered hawkFirst of all, don't forget that today is your last day to enter our kefir giveaway!  Now, on to the real post....

When I started playing with kefir, I read all of the instructions on the internet that told me to strain my kefir each day in a plastic sieve (no non-stainless-steel metal).  That allows you to decant the kefir from the grains very effectively, and is definitely the best way to manage your kefir.

But...we don't have a plastic sieve.  And the primary hunk of kefir grain is so big, it's quite simple to scoop out of a bowl of kefir.  Sure, I might miss some tiny off-shoots this way, but what has happened so far is that the main grain puts out a smaller bud, like the one you can see in the photo above, and I can either cut that off or just notice it's missing and go scooping around for it when I want to expand my kefir colony.  So far, we've expanded once, and one of the grains is probably about ready to split again.

While my non-seiving method is the height of laziness, I can't help thinking that I'm probably following the lead of the original kefir culturers.  Do you really think the nomadic shepherds in the Middle East who first developed kefir had plastic sieves and time to let the liquid slowly drain out of their fermented milk?  I could be wrong, but I'll bet they were scoopers too.

Cracked puddleWhich is all a long way of saying --- kefir culture certainly can be simple if you let it be!  Once a day, I put in about five minutes decanting a jar of fermented milk, scooping out the, grains, refilling the jar, and (the more time-consuming part) doctoring Mark's kefir so it tastes like chocolate.  I thought I had an iron stomach before we started, but I've noticed my stomach is even stronger now, without even the rare bouts of flatulence that sometimes came from eating peanut butter.

As a side note, kefir isn't terribly photogenic, so I've included a couple of photos from my Friday walk in this post.  So, don't spend too long trying to figure out how a hawk and a cracked puddle relate to fermented milk...but feel free to tell me in the comments if they do.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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Good for you Anna. Bravo!!!!! It's people like you who dare to think for themselves, and disregard the foolish instructions found today; that keep us from ever entering the hive mind so desperately trying to destroy pun intended.

Oh by the way did you wear your safety goggles???? Laughs hysterically...


Comment by Edith Sat Feb 8 11:01:11 2014

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