There are two types of kefir grains: water kefir which has a yellow/white crystal colour, and milk kefir which has a white creamy cauliflower-type appearance. Both are delicious and have many health benefits. Kefir can be taken by all generations, from young to old, male and female. Even pregnant women are welcome to drink. Since milk kefir grains feed on lactose, kefir is perfect for individuals who are colon sensitive and lactose intolerant. The good thing about kefir is that it is not only curative but also preventive which means you don’t have to be sick to take it and it is safe to drink it everyday.
Water Kefir: Water kefir is non-dairy and is made with fruit juices, coconut water, organic sugar water or as simple as filtered water. Never use tap water since the chemicals in it (chlorine and fluorine) destroy the kefir. Water kefir can be used as a base for a variety of fruit gelatine desserts, salad dressings, popsicles, and non-dairy smoothies. It can be flavoured and is a good alternative for sodas and juices. Most people prefer water kefir to be plain. Water kefir has a sweeter taste as compared with milk kefir. But the longer you ferment, the sweetness disappear. It also tends to have a slightly fermented flavour.
Milk Kefir: Although cow milk is commonly used, milk kefir can also be made from other mammalian sources like goat, buffalo, camel and sheep. Non-dairy products can also be used like coconut milk, soy milk, nut milk and almond milk, however results may vary and nutrient sources are lesser as compared with the dairy milk products. No matter what type of milk you used, kefir grains manage to feed and ferment to any type of milk used. Milk kefir can be consumed as is or flavoured. It can also be used as a base for salad dressings and smoothies. It is a great alternative for butter, buttermilk or yogurt. Milk kefir can also be made into cheese kefir by straining to remove the whey, making a variety of cheese ranging from soft, spreadable cheese kefir to a cream cheese kefir, or a hard cheese kefir. Milk kefir has a more strong flavoured cultured milk depending on the level of fermentation. Generally, well fermented kefir has a sourer or tart taste and can be a little bit carbonated.