– delicious soda that keeps your gut healthy!
We all know that normal sodas from the grocery shop aren’t good for us. They are either filled with sugar or artificial sweeteners, none of which our bodies need.
So – try changing a bad habit into an excellent one, with some fun in the kitchen! Drinking this homemade soda has helped me and so many others in creating a healthy environment in the gut. Water kefir helps get rid of allergies, stomach and digestive problems, as well as general health issues.
Because of the load of natural probiotics it contains, you should start out with a small glass a day so your body gets used to it. If not, you’ll hear a lot of rumbling down your tummy!
What is it?
Water kefir is a fermented beverage made by adding kefir grains to sugary water. The grains are a complex of bacteria and yeast that metabolize the sugar to crate this lovely drink. The drink is great for kids, and like champagne for adults if you second-ferment it. But I’ll get to that later.
What do you need?
To get started, all you need are some water kefir grains and sugar. (These are not the same as milk kefir grains, which require milk to grow!). You can purchase your water kefir grains online very easily. They come both as fresh ones in water, or as dried grains you simply rehydrate by putting in sweetened water for three days. Then you throw out the water and get started on your first batch!
Here’s the recipe:
- 1 litre of water
- About 3 tbsp kefir grains
- About 5 tbsp of sugar (I use organic, unrefined demerara)
- Some pieces of dried fruits like raisins, apricots etc.
- 1 or 2 pieces of organic lemon without peel or ginger (to keep the right ph level)
- A glass jar for appx one litre
- Plastic strainer (do not use metal)
- A strong bottle for fermented drinks (if you want to second-ferment)
How to do it?
Dissolve the sugar in the water. Add the grains and the fruits and the lemon/ginger. Leave it for 24 to 48 hours. Because the grains are living creatures (bacteria and yeast) they will react to their surroundings according to temperature, and maybe even energy. I tend to speak to mine, so they kind of know me already before they end up in my digestive system. (Ha ha).
How should it taste? How do I know it’s ready?
After 24 – 48 hours you strain the liquid from the grains. The grains will now be reused as you make a new batch immediately. (The same amount of sugar etc.) The water should now taste zesty, but still with a softness to it. The longer it ferments the sourer it gets, so try it out and find out how you prefer it. The health benefits are all in your glass, and you may drink it right away.
Second fermentation (Optional)
If you want a more sparkly drink you can now pour the water on a bottle and add some fresh fruits, like a bit of orange, strawberries or my favourite; ginger. Leave it on the counter for 24 more hours and then put it cold. I prefer it to be served chilled.
BEWARE! If the temperature is hot in your kitchen, the process goes faster. And this drink can create a lot of bubbles. So be careful when you open the bottle not to spill out the precious drops!
Ginger boosts the sparkling a lot so don’t forget it on the counter. When you cool it in the fridge the process goes slower. I’ve had my fair share of water kefir explosions, so that’s why I’m warning you 😉
The sparkling water kefir is a zesty, healthy drink to serve your family and friends. And remember to drink it yourself so you get the benefit from your work!
Maintain the happiness of your water kefir grains!
Occasionally I nourish my grains with a pinch of Himalaya salt, some molasses or some maple syrup. They do like minerals. And remember, they’re living creatures, so be sure to keep an eye on them!
Have fun experimenting! And feel free to share your experiences in the comment section 🙂