Are you the new proud owner of dehydrated milk kefir grains? Here are the instructions to rehydrate and activate milk kefir grains for the first time to make delicious homemade milk kefir.
How to Activate Dehydrated Milk Kefir Grains
Rehydrating milk kefir grains to make your first batch of homemade kefir is quick, easy and in just a few steps!
- Milk kefir grains
- Milk (whole, light, 0%, or raw milk)
- Do this step only once.
- Pour the content of the milk kefir grains pouch into the jar.
- Add 250ml of non-chlorinated water and mix.
- Cover and let stand for 2 hours at room temperature.
- Rinse with lukewarm water using the sieve (you can use tap water, but be careful of the temperature).
Reactivation (Day 1 to 7)
- Place the milk kefir grains in the jar.
- Add ½ cup of milk (125ml).
- Cover and let stand at room temperature (19-25°C).
- After 8 hours, mix regularly using a clean spoon or by shaking your closed container up and down (a very effective technique!) This step is essential to allow the milk to fully come into contact with the grains.
- After 24 hours, filter and rinse with warm water. Using the sieve (watch out for the temperature), throw away the milk and repeat the steps every day, in order to properly reactivate your grains.
- Start tasting on day 3. You can drink your milk kefir as soon as its aroma and taste are satisfying (usually around the 5th day).
- As soon as you see signs of fermentation (the milk will start thickening and acidifying, usually between day 3 and day 5), double the amount of milk.
- If your milk kefir becomes very acidic, or if there is too much coagulation after 24 hours or less, either double the amount of milk or half the amount of kefir grains.
Reactivation (After Day 7)
- It is no longer necessary to rinse the kefir grains. Continue to make your milk kefir as regularly as possible in order to have a good amount of very active grains. Read our full article on how to make milk kefir.
- After one month, your grains will have gained in strength. You will probably need to find a larger sieve to properly separate the grains from the kefir, as it will be much thicker now.
- Milk kefir grains should become pearl white after a few days and will generally begin to grow and multiply significantly after about 4 weeks.
- Have fun trying different kefir recipes. If you like your kefir effervescent, you could do a second fermentation in a hermetically sealed jar (12 to 24 hours at room temperature).
Most sieves will do, either stainless steel or plastic. Never use hot water, it would kill your grains. Check the temperature with your hand. If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for the kefir grains.
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Taking a Break From Making Milk Kefir
The kefir grains works better if they continuously produce kefir. If you want to take a break from fermenting kefir, rinse your grains, dry them with a towel and freeze them in an airtight bag. They will keep for at least six months.