When it comes to favouring your water kefir you can really let your imagination be your guide. It’s all about personal preference for different flavours and textures. Flavouring your kefir usually happens during the 2nd stage of fermentation at the same time as you getting your fizz!
So whilst following these instructions for making delicious water-kefir try adding some of these flavours to your 2nd stage.
Ginger Beer Kefir (MY FAVOURITE!!!)- try blending a thumb sized piece of ginger with a cup of 1st stage fermented water-kefir. Then strain the liquid through a fine mess strainer or nut milk bag to remove the ginger pulp. Then use this liquid to flavour the remaining kefir that you are bottling. I personally like it good and strong where it slightly burns the back of my throat!
Turmeric– same as above.
Fruit Juice– Try and go organic. Add around 15% juice to your kefir. My favourites are apple, pear, pomegranate, or pineapple. Making your own is great too. See what’s in season and juice away!
Cucumber, Apple and Mint– I blended a cup of apple juice with a handful of mint with a 3inch piece of cucumber. I strained out the pulp and added this to my kefir and it ended up like a healthy Pimms!! Seriously delicious! (I actually brought it too a friends BBQ and we drank it with Pimms. So much nicer and healthier than lemonade!)
Fruit Cordials– Try adding about 5% cordial to flavour your kefir for some delicious and intense flavours. Remember the sugars get eaten by the remaining yeasts in the kefir. I make elderflower cordial every year and just love this recipe by River Cottage. I make loads of it and freeze it to last the whole year. I have 3 daughters and often buy good quality fruit cordials without nasties instead of juice boxes for their birthday parties and end up with lots of lefts overs. They usually end up turning into lovely water kefir. My kids love a Morello cherry flavoured one that I often buy.
Elderberry Juice– I also make a shed load of Elderberry Juice in time for winter as its great for strengthening the immune system and treating colds and flus. There are lots of recipes that include sugar or make elderberry syrup. I tend to just cook them up and strain them. I them add this ‘juice’ to make up about 15% of my Kefir. I also freeze many batches of this Elderberry juice concentrate to last me through the winter. Please note that you can also make this from dried elderberries bought from most health food shops.
Tea Bags– Try just adding your favourite flavored herbal/fruit tea bag straight into your 2nd stage bottle for a really subtle yet tasty flavour option.
Fresh Fruit– Berries, berries, and more berries! Pop them straight into the bottle. The only downside is that they tend to break down into bits which isn’t that popular with the kids. I also love adding passion fruit-seed and all for added crunch
Please comment below and tell us what flavours you love. Happy Fermenting!