Recipe: Coconut Water Kefir
Looking for a fresh, healthy alternative to soda this summer? Consider adding coconut water kefir to your list of options.
Coconut water has all the salts and sugars our body needs to recover from dehydration. This makes it a wonderful alternative to sports drinks often laden with high fructose corn syrup and/or caffeine. When the coconut water is fermented the natural sugars are “eaten” by the grains (or starter) and the result is a healthy, fizzy, tangy drink that not only helps replenish electrolytes, but strengthens the immune system by repopulating the gut flora.
If you’re not accustomed to the taste of a fermented beverage this is a great place to start. My kids loved it immediately.
There are two ways to make coconut water kefir. One is to use a kefir starter, the other is to use water kefir grains.
Kefir Starter Method
This requires the purchase of a kefir starter. Two online sources include:
Combine 4 C. coconut water* with 1 package starter. Whisk to help blend. Cover with lid and allow to sit at room temperature for 48 hours. Save 1/4 C. for your next batch and refrigerate the rest. Drink when chilled. Use your 1/4 C. of saved kefir to start your next batch. After 5-8 batches, use a new starter packet.
This requires the purchase of water kefir grains. Two online sources include:
This method is more economical since the grains multiply quickly which means you’ll always have them on hand. You’ll also have enough to share with friends! Put 2 Tablespoons fresh kefir grains in glass jar. Cover with 3 cups coconut water*. Cover with lid and allow to sit at room temperature for 48 hours. Strain out the grains and transfer kefir to refrigerator. Grains can be used immediately for a new batch or stored in water in the refrigerator.
*Coconut water: Any commercially available pure coconut water will work. If you are fortunate enough to have fresh coconuts available extract your own. Take a sharp tool such as a screwdriver and poke at each of the three eyes. Find the one that is soft and make a hole. Drain coconut water into glass jar or measuring cup.
THE WRITER: Andrea is a former journalist, a radio host, and the mother of nine children. She is also the founder of momsAWARE, an organization designed to raise awareness about environmental issues. You can read more of her writing at her blog Our Health Journey.
Photo Credit: Andrea Fabry
What’s your favorite healthy soda alternative?
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