Who knew fermenting some sugar water would be a source of science, health, and entertainment?
It was like any other week in our kitchen. It started a few days prior, with some beautiful little water kefir grains and sugar water. The batch of water kefir had cultured perfectly – the color was lighter than 48 hours prior, and it smelled of that funky, yet alluring, water kefir smell. And like always, we prepared for the second fermentation by removing the kefir grains and adding just a few tablespoons of lime juice to the finished water kefir. The flip top was secured on the bottle, and off to the side it was put to culture for a few more days.
Since we were new to water kefir, the excitement was high and we couldn’t wait for the next two days to go by. A warm week had been predicted, so we looked forward to water kefir chilled by frozen blueberries. But, as life would have it, we neglected the water kefir – in fact, we forgot about it until the middle of Day 3. My poor daughter! Had we known, I surely would have dressed her in rain gear!
My daughter had just grabbed the bottle of water kefir and barely pried the top off when an incredibly loud “Pfffffffoof”was heard, followed by the golden retriever running out of the kitchen just in time for my son to run into the kitchen and watch his sister get drenched as a yellow geyser shot 3 feet (seriously, I kid you not) into the air, spraying my counter, the cupboards above and below, and the tile floor with our beloved probiotic drink. Talk about a mess, but the gasping and giggling were worth it. “Do it again, do it again!” is all I heard the next few minutes as we searched for the flip top lid (it flew off and landed several feet behind us) and mopped up the kefir.
Now, we purposely save a bottle every week just to see if it will explode. That’s where the science comes in…with the fall weather now upon us, it is taking a bit longer for the water kefir to culture to its explosive point. We have to guess when we think that special bottle will be ready to open based on how cool it has been during the last few days, and how long we should let it culture.
Oh, and the dog? He’s definitely more aware of our carbonation experiments. The moment he sees one of us head to the counter, combined with the sound of a bottle being dragged across it, he hastily leaves the room! Or, if he sees us go to the freezer and pull out the blueberry bag, he runs for cover. Poor guy!
Note to self: Before enjoying the health benefits of water kefir, open with caution, over the sink.
Watch the video of our exploding water kefir here.