The Newbie’s Guide to Cultured Food: My First Month

Newbie

I’m totally new to cultured foods. Until a couple months ago I had never heard of kefir or kombucha, and had no idea how easy and inexpensive it was to make yogurt at home. (I would’ve eaten a lot more yogurt in college had I known…) Getting into cultured foods has had its ups and down. I’ve made plenty of rookie mistakes, but I have been greatly rewarded with awesome results and a feeling of accomplishment!… 

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Clarissa

I’m a recent college graduate who loves marketing just a little too much. My culturing experiences are few, but I’ve already conquered water kefir, Filmjӧlk yogurt, and San Francisco sourdough! Before college I lived in the mountains of North Carolina, which is definitely my happy place. My favorite pastimes are hiking with my family and catching critters in the creek. My townhouse is full to the brim with cacti and succulents, along with my culturing foods. When I’m not working or gardening I like to make things. This includes painting, sewing, crafting, cake decorating, and messes. Although I’m new to culturing, I love telling others about what I’ve made and discovered!

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Is This Normal, Part 2

Water Kefir - Is this normal?
In our last episode of Is This Normal, we learned about bubbly/foamy water kefir, sinking and floating grains, the range in color of water kefir grains, sediment that can occur, that water kefir is sweet and that it won’t be carbonated without a second ferment.

In this episode of Is This Normal? there is more to learn!… 

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Bonni

Bonni

Bonni started on the cultured foods path quite few years ago, beginning with sauerkraut. Since then, she has cultured yogurt, milk kefir, water kefir, kombucha, a variety of veggies, sour cream and gluten-free sourdough. She is a busy homeschool mom to her daughter, so is always looking for the most efficient and least time consuming ways to manage all of her culturing.

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Water Kefir Flavor Experiments

Water Kefir Experiments

If you’ve read any of my posts before you know I don’t like to change my routine. When I find something I like I stick to it. And, I admit, I’m lazy when it comes to fermenting. That’s why for the past few years I’ve flavored my water kefir with lemon juice and maybe a few berries. It’s yummy, it gets fizzy, and my kiddo likes it so why change? Well this year I’ve been hankering for something a bit different so I decided to experiment a bit…. 

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Suzanne

Suzanne

Suzanne is into gardening, real food, and treading lightly. Her favorite cultured foods include Matsoni yogurt, which tastes just like the yogurt her Armenian grandmother used to make; sauerkraut, which she used to dip out of a barrel each week at her favorite little shop in Germany; and dill pickles, which she used to eat straight from the big jar on the counter of her Grandpa’s general store.

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Starting Water Kefir In Our New Kitchen: Ferment Seasonality

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Do you change your ferments to match the seasons? I do, but I didn’t really think about it too much until we moved off-grid and began to experience a closeness to the elements we never had before.

I bake sourdough much more in the fall and winter. Milk kefir is generally a three season thing as summers here just don’t make for good milk kefir. Vegetable ferments are all year except the three hottest months of summer. Kombucha can happen all year, if I’m on the ball about taking care of it in more extreme periods. And then there’s that beloved water kefir, especially refreshing on triple digit days.

So, with summer approaching and the construction on our off-grid kitchen nearing completion, I’m starting up the water kefir again.

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Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

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