This recipe comes courtesy of Patrick Fahy, executive pastry chef of the Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village.
- 1 quart milk—goat, cow, sheep or coconut
- 1 tablespoon kefir grains (ordered online or strained from a friend’s batch of homemade kefir)
Pour the milk into a clean glass jar. Add kefir grains and cap. If you do not want your kefir to develop too much effervescence, then put the lid on loosely. Leave jar at room temperature for 24 to 48 hours, shaking it periodically. I put my kefir out on the countertop next to the stove where it is a little warm and out of sunlight. In about 18 hours I find it to be perfectly cultured without becoming too sour or separated.
At this point, pour kefir through a strainer to fish out the precious grains. Reserve grains and use them for the next batch, storing them in a small jar covered in milk where they will keep for 1 month in the refrigerator. The grains should continue to look whitish in color and plump with vitality. You only need 1 tablespoon of grains per quart of milk to keep your kefir going.
You can leave it out to continue to sour or refrigerate it and it will last about 1 week. Your homemade kefir will likely be sourer and more watery than the ones in the store. This is because commercial kefir contains thickeners and sweeteners. Embrace the homemade flavor!