Water kefir uses the same process as milk kefir, but its makeup is a bit different (the grains tend to be clear, rather than white), and you feed it with only water and sugar. The process is the same though with the grains added to sugary water for 24 hours, then the liquid used as you wish fro making drinks.
Water kefir, as a cousin to milk kefir, contains bacteria and yeast. The kefir grains feast on sugar water rather than milk, producing a beverage full of friendly bacteria and yeasts. In a second fermentation, a fruit, juice, or flavouring is added, producing a beverage that is like flavoured sodas, though not as sweet.
Compared to other fermented beverages such as kombucha, water kefir is much less acidic, giving it a milder flavour more palatable to kids.
The sweetness of water kefir is largely dependent on the culturing time. The longer it cultures, the more sugar the bacteria consume, and the less sweet it will be.
Water kefir can be flavoured in a plethora of ways.
FRESH OR DRIED FRUIT
Fill your flip top bottle with the fermented water kefir, leaving a bit of head room. Add any dried fruit, such as dried pineapple or crystallised ginger and ferment for 2-3 days. When using fresh fruit, leave in the water kefir no longer than 24 hours.
Adding fruit juice is the quickest way to enjoy a flavoured water kefir. We love to squeeze 2 blood oranges into a 750ml bottle then top off with water kefir. Lemon juice, orange juice and apple juice all work really well here. Seal in a bottle and leave to ferment for 2-3 days.