Milk Kefir Unleashed
Milk Kefir Unleashed An Instructional Guide With Tips, Tricks & Recipes By: Thomas Egbert of Fusion Teas
www.fusionteas.com www.facebook.com/NorthTexasKefirKlub © 2013 by Thomas Egbert All rights reserved. No portion of this guide may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical—including fax, photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system—without the written permission of the author. With that being said I would just like to ask in a more personal context that you please respect my work and the information I am giving you. Please only use this for yourself and your immediate family. I am grateful and pleased that I am able to provide you with this information and I appreciate your cooperation. Disclaimer This electronic book is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of medical advice and treatment from your personal physicians. Readers are advised to consult their own doctors or other qualified health professionals regarding the treatment of medical conditions. The author shall not be held liable or responsible for any misunderstanding or misuse of the information contained in this guide or for any loss, damage, or injury caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly by any treatment, action, or application of any food or food source discussed in this electronic book. The information is from the authors research and experience and should not be taken as fact. The statements in this book have not been evaluated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
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Table of Contents: About the Author………………………………………………………….pg.3 Introduction………………………………………………………………..pg.3 -What is Kefir? -Where did it come from? -What can it do? (Potential health benefits) Instructions: An in depth guide……...………………………………......pg.7 Tips, Tricks, & FAQ's……………………………..……………………….pg.11 Recipes:……………………………………………………………………..pg.17 Conclusion: So now what?..........................................................................pg.29
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About the Author: So you are probably asking yourself what does this guy know about Kefir? Doesn't he run a tea business? And the answer to that is yes but having the tea business played an important role in my discovery of Kefir. Our mission statement at Fusion Teas is this: To share our passion of tea and herbal tea and do our part in promoting a healthier society through tea. Naturally I have always been a health minded person and I came across kombucha, which is a fermented probiotic tea beverage much like kefir. I had always read what a healthy digestive system was supposed to be but never actually had one. I didn't have a digestive disease like crohns or ibs but knew that my digestive system was far from optimal. I began researching about what kombucha was and how it was made. I read and learned about the health benefits. I even spoke to a few customers about their experience with it and how it helped them and their health. It seemed perfect, I owned a tea business; I could easily and cost effectively make it. Then, while researching it, I stumbled across kefir and immediately was fascinated. I compared the two. I read everything I could find and what I found was that milk kefir was by far the most beneficial fermented probiotic beverage you could consume. I had always liked dairy products like yogurt, sour cream, cheese, etc. so I couldn't wait to give it a try. I most likely purchased my grains the same way you have and the rest is history. I tell you all of this so that you can relate. I do not have a doctorate or a fancy education. I am just a small business owner with experience. All of the tips, tricks and pointers I give in this eBook are from my own trial and error and experience. Kefir isn't hard to do, so do not feel discourage. It's actually one of the simplest culturing processes in fermenting foods, especially in the dairy category. There are just a few nuances that will help you along the way and set you up for success.
Introduction: What are Kefir Grains? So what are Kefir Grains anyway? Well the short answer is they are made up of good bacteria and yeast. To understand what kefir is we must first understand the grains used to make kefir from the milk. According to Real Food Fermentation by Alex Lewin, ‘Kefir grains are combinations of yeasts and bacteria living on a substrate made up of a variety of dairy components.’ These live kefir grains look a little bit like cauliflower but can also come in many different shapes. Despite the name, Kefir grains are not actually a grain like wheat or rice. They have a somewhat rubbery gelatinous texture. Kefir grains cannot be made or manufactured. No other milk culture forms grains so it is very unique.
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Where did they originate? Kefir originated in the Caucasus Mountains more than 2000 years ago and were considered a gift from God. Traditionally, Kefir was made by mixing Kefir grains with fresh, raw, cow or goat milk which was then left in goatskin leather bags to ferment. It was customary to leave the bag outside the door and let anyone entering, kick or shake the bag. This assisted the culture process. Since then, kefir has been passed down from generation to generation.
What is Milk Kefir? To understand how milk is transformed into Kefir it is beneficial to understand the culturing (or fermenting) process. When fermenting anything you are adding bacteria and or yeast to a substance. In many milk products the bacteria added is a form of lactic acid. The bacteria then consumes the sugar in the substance and in turn the bacteria grows and reproduces. Yeast is a microscopic fungus that reproduce by budding, and are capable of converting sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide. The fermentation process increases the shelf-life of the product, while enhancing the taste and improving the digestibility. Now that we understand how fermenting is done we can specifically talk about what is happening when culturing milk into Kefir. As stated earlier, kefir grains are made up of good bacteria and yeast living in a symbiotic relationship held together in a rubbery gelatinous texture. When these are added to animal milk the bacteria and yeast begin to consume the lactose (milk sugar). You need to remember that kefir grains are active and alive. The lactose acts as food to them. As they consume the lactose they begin to grow and reproduce. This process begins to break down the milk so it is easier to digest. As the yeast assists the bacteria it releases carbon dioxide giving the milk an effervescent characteristic. This process should take anywhere from 12-24 hours. The ending result is a refreshing near lactose free milk kefir with an abundance of beneficial bacteria. The milk thickens somewhat during the process as the lactose is consumed. It should be creamy, like a drinkable yogurt and the higher the fat content of the milk the creamier it will be. After straining the kefir grains out to start the process over again with fresh milk the Kefir can be consumed plain right away or chilled in the fridge or added to any number of items in cooking or making a smoothie.
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What are the Health Benefits? Chances are the reason you are here is that someone told you about kefir and some of the wonderful health benefits associated with it. You may have even saw some in your local grocery store and wondered about what it was. Well, it is true, Kefir has many reputed health benefits. In my opinion homemade kefir is one of the healthiest things we can add to our diet. It truly is a miracle at what it can do and how it can potentially change your life. At the core of our health is our digestive system. If we do not have an optimum digestive system we are more prone to a whole host of sickness and disease. 80% of our immune system resides in the wall of the intestines. Gut flora plays a key role in absorbing vital nutrients as well. Today’s food is becoming more and more nutrient deficient. So we turn to vitamins for the nutrients we lack but if your gut is working overtime and under attack with stress we can lose or bypass all the nutrients we want to absorb. You might as well cut out the middle man and flush your vitamins down the toilet. Kefir can be the strongest natural remedy against any allergy, particularly food sensitivities. Most food sensitivities are caused because the body has a hard time or does not know how to digest a certain food. Kefir aids in breaking down food so it is much easier to digest and doesn’t cause the body to freak out. It is a natural antibiotic without side effects. Bad bacteria simply cannot exist in the type of environment kefir creates. If you ever do need to take antibiotics, kefir helps your body get back into balance. Many that take antibiotics never actually get back the vital gut flora which can cause a candida over growth. Kefir can help control acid reflux and heartburn. It can also help control or even lower LDL cholesterol. By aiding in digesting food and sugars it helps to create harmony in the body and lessen inflammation in the blood stream, thus helping the cholesterol to flow freely and not attach itself to the artery lining. Kefir reduces sugar cravings. The bacteria consumes sugar and balances the candida in your gut. Candida feasts on sugar and if there is no sugar to feast on the over growth of candida ceases to exist and can therefore reduce the cravings of sugar and carbs. Consumption of 1-2 cups of kefir daily can correct high blood pressure usually within 3 months. It has been shown that friendly bacteria can actually produce B vitamins in the gut which can lead to higher energy. Calcium and other essential nutrients found in milk are fully absorbed and provide better bio-availability. Any disease of the gut or colon can be benefited by drinking kefir on a regular basis. Here is a list of other health benefits kefir can assist in. Milk Kefir Unleashed | Fusion Teas 5
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Eliminate cravings for unhealthy foods Promotes faster healing from wounds, illness, etc. Benefits people who have sleep disorders, depression and ADHD Contains essential amino acids which helps body maintenance and healing The proteins found in kefir makes it easily digestible, and therefore easily utilized by the body Tryptophan is abundant in kefir and promotes relaxing effects on the nervous system Kefir also contains a large amount of phosphorus which helps the body utilize carbs, fats and proteins Rich in vitamins B12, B1 and vitamin K, kefir is also a good source of biotin (a B vitamin that aids the body’s absorption of other B vitamins like folic acid, B12 and pantothenic acid The B vitamins leads to benefits such as kidney regulation, liver and nervous system function and also helps to relieve skin disorders, boost energy and promote longevity
Kefir treats liver disease, gallbladder, kidney stones, irritable bowel syndrome, gastritis, pancreatitis, ulcers, colon cancer, candida, hypertension, psoriasis, eczema, inflammatory diseases, heart disease, lung infections, acne, parodontosis, diarrhea, constipation, sleeping disorders, depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, yeast infection, arthritis, colitis, gout, rheumatism, stomach disorders, stomach cramps, chronic intestine infections, liver infections, asthma, bronchitis, sclerosis, anemia, hepatitis, and leaky gut syndrome. Kefir dissolves gall bladder stones, cleans the gastrointestinal tract, stops growth of cancer cells, reduces the size of tumors, reverses calcination of blood vessels, cleans blood vessels, boosts energy, normalizes metabolism, nourishes hair, lowers blood sugar, lowers blood lipid (fat) levels, promotes healthy bowel movement, has anti-stress properties, eliminates vaginal odors, cures wrinkles, cures migraines, detoxifies the body, prevents metastasis, and cures bad morning breath. Sounds like it’s too good to true right? Well, here is my simple explanation to all these proposed health benefits. Our bodies are an amazing masterpiece. It has been designed to heal itself and in the right environment it has the ability to protect itself from everything. The problem in today’s world is we are over working our bodies. We are constantly throwing free radicals and toxins that create oxidative stress at it. The most over worked area in our body is our digestive system. Like I said in the beginning, “good health begins in the gut.” If we can lessen the load on the digestive system and stop stressing it out so much our bodies can then begin to work and heal other areas in the body. Makes perfect sense right? So when someone claims that kefir has helped them heal quicker from wounds or cleared up their skin it no longer seems too absurd. Helping one area in the body can indirectly help another in the body. So drink up and spread the word! Milk Kefir Unleashed | Fusion Teas 6
Instructions: So how do I make it? Many of you have experience with Kefir and culturing but some of you may not. These instructions are for everyone, whether it is your first time or consider yourself an expert. Who knows, you may learn a tip or two. Making Kefir and caring for the grains is not hard but there are a few things you need to make sure you do or do not do in the best interest of the grains. I will not only go over the steps but also the why. Knowing the why will help you understand and make sense of it all, which may prevent you from overlooking the step or precaution. Keep in mind, these instructions and tips are from my years of experience. I do not proclaim to be all knowing. I just want you to start off on the right foot. Culturing milk with kefir grains and keeping the grains happy is not hard. All the grains need is lactose (milk sugar) and they will live and multiply forever. What I find people have difficulty with is fine tuning the process to meet their expectations or liking. I am going to offer two sets of instructions. The first will be simple and straight forward. Mainly the rules that must be adhered to. The second set of instructions will be more in depth with reasoning. These instructions will hopefully teach you how to make great tasting kefir with a smooth creamy consistency. Here are some important precautions. • • • • • • •
ALWAYS USE ONLY CLEAN AND CLEAR PLASTIC OR GLASS CONTAINERS, CLEAN PLASTIC OR WOODEN SPOONS AND CLEAN PLASTIC STRAINERS! ALWAYS KEEP ALL THE UTENSILS CLEAN & DRY THEM WELL. NEVER LET THE GRAINS COME IN CONTACT WITH CHLORINATED WATER! NEVER SUBJECT THE GRAINS TO COLD BELLOW FREZZING UNLESS PROPERLY STORING THEM. NEVER SUBJECT THE GRAINS TO HEAT ABOVE 100 DEGREES! NEVER LET THE GRAINS GET IN CONTACT WITH METAL UNLESS IT IS STAINLESS STEAL! NEVER LET THE GRAINS IN DIRECT SUNLIGHT! >>>>> NOT FOLLOWING THE ABOVE MAY HARM THE GRAINS!