Saturday, October 31, 2015

Water Kefir Grains And Jaggery

When I switched from sugar to jaggery, my grains went from crumbly to chunky within a week. You can buy jaggery cheaply from Indian grocery stores. The cheapest are in heavy mounds which you'll need to grate first. I just use the powdered form for convenience. 

Below is a strong jaggery solution and powder.

Jaggery is evaporated cane sugar so it's unrefined. In fact, you will usually find sediment that looks like sand and ash. To remove, I mix jaggery powder with hot water and let it sit for a few minutes. Then I slowly pour it into a glass container through a fine sieve. 

This soup skimmer is what I use and you can see it has a very fine mesh. (It's also great for straining coffee grains, making it an impromptu coffee filter). I bought this from a cheap homeware store. 

I top up with cold water and add the water kefir grains. This is the finished product. The grains double easily within a few days when they are well fed and warm. From time to time I switch to refined sugar to steady their growth.

Check out the activity from using jaggery!

UPDATE: The jaggery I was using was terrible, it had too much sediment and produced a bitter drink. I ditched it and now I'm using palm sugar and white sugar. I will go back to jaggery but will try another brand.