Sunday, July 1, 2012

Kefir, Kombucha, Krazy

The Kraziness started during Lent when I ordered dehydrated kefir grains from Cultures for Health and a kombucha tea starter kit from Laurel's Farm.  You can get both from Culture for Health, but I like to try different small businesses, so I split my order.  I got my kefir grains right away and started the re-hydrating process.  Laurel's Farm does not accept credit cards, so I mailed them a check in the amount of $40 and waited.  And waited.  And waited some more.  Unfortunately, I never received the kit or any kind of acknowledgment, despite the fact that the company did cash my check on April 2.  A month later I left a comment on a Happy Home Economist kombucha post.  I told of my experience with LF and asked if any other readers had had problems with this company.  At least two others had, so do NOT buy from Laurel's Farm.

The good news is that a lovely lady, who made herself known to me in a follow-up comment as "Loretta in Georgia", offered to mail me some of her kombucha babies.  She did just that.  What a sweet lady!  While I waited for them to arrive, I kept giggling at the recurring thought, "I'm expecting babies in the mail."  They arrived, and Emma eagerly took on the kombucha culturing.  She is experimenting with doing second fermentations with different flavors like ginger and pineapple.   I have three quarts of kefir fermenting in the kitchen, and she has four half-gallon jars of kombucha going in the dining room.  She has shared her babies with two friends and her Grandma Haught.

I'm on my second batch of kefir grains.  In the interest of too much information, I suffocated my first batch one night when, in a state of exhaustion, I forgot to put the paper covers on my jars and instead screwed on plastic lids and left them to ferment on the counter.  The kefir may have been fine, but it didn't smell good the next day, so I threw it out.  Emma suggested that I buy my replacement grains from Happy Herbalist because theirs are not dehydrated.  So I did that and have been very happy with them.  The grains are big and way fluffier than the ones I had to re-hydrate, though I suppose the dehydrated ones would have eventually gotten this big if I had managed not to goof up so early in their life cycle, or whatever you call it.

We have been on a smoothie kick this week.  We've been putting organic strawberries, coconut oil, 6 raw egg yolks, about a quart of raw milk, and some kefir cheese in the blender and whizzing it up with ice for breakfast.  It's quite tasty.  The first day we didn't add the yolks or coconut oil.  It is much more filling with those additions and much more nutritious.


Kathy Felsted Usher said...

I really have been meaning to try this. Thanks for the tip on where not to buy!

Wendy Haught said...

Emma can ship you some 'bucha babies in some starter tea! Just let me know.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

I will! Thank you! Let me get past this hot spell. We've been concentrating on the garden, scraping squash eggs and trying to keep things living until the rains start again.