Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Kefir, I Think

Wow, I've been out of it for a few weeks. When I left New Hampshire I got some cultures of kefir and kombucha from my friend Sarah to bring back to State College, and I started those up the following Sunday which was Feb 24. Nothing seemed to be happening with either until the following Friday and the kefir looked like it had separated out all of sudden in what Wild Fermentation describes as sour cream and whey ... like maybe it went a bit too long at room temperature:
(In the background is a batch of kombucha, which is an odder fermentation by a long shot.) I pulled the creamy stuff out and it was sour, so I made a tzatziki dip out of it with cucumber, lemon juice, dill, garlic, olive oil, coriander, cumin and black pepper. Super tangy, but good. I still have the whey (liquidy) part and some of the starter. Interesting ferment, since it doesn't demand close attention to temperature like yogurt does, but it does seem temperamental. It seems like nothing is happening and then all of sudden you go from milky drink to floating sour cream.


  1. Maybe you're discovered an exciting new sour strain of Kefir! Of course, isn't it usually a bit tangy?

  2. Yeah, but it's supposed to be a liquid, not a liquid and a solid. It gets more sour as the fermentation goes on. Probably most live culture kefirs are refrigerated or pasteurized, so they don't get to this stage of ferment. Again, not bad, but I'd like to perfect my craft with this kind of thing.

  3. Hey Brendan! Your sour cream is called kefir cheese, and is great to eat. If you would like kefir itself, just shake up the jar and the liquids and solids will mix back together. The longer you ferment it, the more acidic it will get. I've been neglecting mine recently- I need to get back on it!