The Versatility of Water Kefir

outsidethebox

From the Editor: Please welcome Suzanne, Cultures for Health Customer Support Rep and Cultured-Kitchen Keeper.

I’ve been stuck in a rut with my home cultures. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a nice rut! I love my plain kombucha, water kefir flavored with lemon juice, and kimchi. My kiddo eats cultured carrot sticks regularly and doesn’t complain. And in summer, I make cultured salsa nearly every week.

But I am a creature of habit. I don’t vary much in my routine or use the finished products in many other recipes. Sure, sometimes the kombucha jar is more handy than a bottle of apple cider vinegar, so I use a little in my salad dressing. Not very inspired.

I lead a fermentation workshop at a local Education Resource Center, and while sharing new recipes with kids and parents, I realized that it’s time to branch out and get a bit more daring with my own cultured foods. At our last meeting, I brought jars of finished water kefir, and we not only flavored and bottled the kefir, we also made a salad dressing and a dessert. They were both delicious!

I knew a berry dessert would be a big hit with the kids, so I chose to make Blended Berry Water Kefir Gelatin. It was super easy to make, and I know it will be great to have a cool, refreshing dessert that requires only a few minutes of preparation for the summer.

berrywaterkefir

The Water Kefir Honey Mustard Salad Dressing was well-received by both kids and adults alike. While the water kefir in the dressing didn’t add too much in the way of flavor, I was pleased to find another way to make my weekly salad dressing into a probiotic food.  The dressing was tasty and made a lovely addition to a plain bowl of salad greens.

This experience made me realize just how versatile cultured foods can be. My next move is to get back into a routine with milk kefir grains, because I can use the finished kefir in so many different ways.

What’s your next adventure with cultured foods?

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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