Delilah . . .

Yep, the naming thing has returned to my life, thanks in part to Jess of Rabid Little Hippy and Narf7 of The Road to Serendipity. They have named their stoves and their kefir grains and who knows what else . . .

My stove (not wood, except in my dreams, where it has the same name) is now ‘Hester’. And MY kefir grains are Delilah; they are so, so tempting . . . but they can’t cut my hair, lucky for them!    😉

Anyway, about Delilah (did I digress there, or what?): over two weeks ago, Christi from Farmlet mailed some kefir grains to me. When they didn’t arrive in the first week, I began to think that they had been intercepted by the customs people; likely so they could begin their own growvolution 😉

But, no, after 16 or 17 days, the lovely package arrived! I unwrapped the ziplok bag and sniffed it; it smelt delightfully ‘yeasty’. So I rushed off to Mum’s computer and looked up ‘how to make kefir’ and got lots of links. This one was super helpful: http://www.tammysrecipes.com/making_kefir (and, by the way, Christi has a link on her blog to info on using kefir to make a ‘sourdough’ bread: http://farmlet.wordpress.com/2013/04/03/kefir-madness/)

I had given up on seeing the grains, so had taken the 2% milk down to my Aunty’s place. However, we had lots of 1% in the fridge. I rustled up a pint (2 cup) canning jar (bottling to you fellow picky people out there lol). Into it I carefully decanted the grains and the milk that had fed them all that time; over the top went a piece of plastic wrap, held on with the ring. I put it on top of the fridge and left it to do its thing:

Delilah swimming on top of the Fridge

Delilah swimming on top of the Fridge

Tonight, I checked to see how she was doing and found a bit of whey showing at the top and bottom of the milk. So I got a cup and Mum’s plastic sieve; put the cup in the sink, held the sieve over it and poured the very thickened milk in. I used my fingers to swirl it around until only a handful of grains were left. I had milky hands and couldn’t take a picture, but honestly, it was a good half-handful! Delilah and I were very happy!! I put her back in the jar without washing it, added more milk and returned her to the top of the fridge. The kefir is now in a covered container in the fridge, waiting to be turned into something; most likely a smoothie tomorrow. It tastes a bit yeasty, but not unpleasant; mind you, I’m one who eats raw bread dough and other things . . .

Here’s what I got the first time (and a bit spilt out; the sieve is too large; I’ll have to get a smaller one, I think):

How she's grown in just two days!

How she’s grown in just two days! 

I’d forgotten I took this before I added more milk! Yay!! That’s the kefir in the cup at the bottom of the photo and Delilah in the glass jar. Christi, aren’t you proud of how well your ‘girl’ is doing? I’m totally in awe!! I do wish now that I hadn’t been in such a hurry and had photographed the grains as they were when I first saw them. You’ll just have to take my word for it; they were NOT that large!!

Next week, when I’m back at Mum’s, I’m hoping for a rainy day or three; then I can experiment with pancakes, muffins, maybe even bread . . .

I am so excited! and even more pleased!! From what I’d read, I’d expected it to be a month or more for Delilah to get to this size. She must like living with me . . .

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4 thoughts on “Delilah . . .

  1. She will take a bit of time to get back to full production as she needs to get used to her environment. People tell you that you can’t use specific kinds of milk but if I can use the equivalent of chickpea porridge and my kefir turns out (albeit somewhat alcoholic and fizzy!) then any kind of milk will do! Glad you got delilah 🙂 Brunhilda is chomping down the wood here and we haven’t had to use the gas hot water system since mid April so she is saving us money. Brunhilda is HUGE and has 4 ovens as well as a very large stovetop. I loved her so much that we spent a good proportion of the bit of money left to us when dad died on her and I actually felt guilty for a bit till I realised just how much money she was going to save us over the next few years :). I keep 2 sets of kefir grains. Kid Creole is kept in milk (he is my “fall back” in case I get too random with my idea of what “milk” kefir grains will actually culture and the rest decide to go heads up) and his “coconuts” (Kid Creole and the coconuts was a U.K. band and as I intended to use coconut milk for my non dairy kefir at the time it seemed a fitting name for them both 😉 ) make my non-dairy milk. I make my own soy milk but add a lot of date puree to the milk as I now know that it’s the sugar that makes kefir happy. My soymilk is much healthier than plain soymilk because it is fermented, fizzy, a teensy bit alcoholic, carbonated and just plain delicious! I use it in my morning green smoothies. I tip it into milk occasionally to remind it that it should stay alive. You should see how fast it cultures real milk! ;). I guess Delilah was starving hungry and that’s why she went nuts reproducing herself. Eat…Eat…EAT! 😉

    • Now I’m nervous . . . ! If that’s not ‘full production, I’m wondering what FP will look like . . . 🙂 do we need a new fridge just for Delilah and her ‘charms’? Naw, if she gets ahead of me, I’ll put her in the fridge to chill . . .

      What brand is Brunhilda? Is she an Aga? Four ovens . . . My Mum baked at least three times a week, every week; all our bread, cake, pies, cookies and more . . . When you are feeding nine kids and a logger husband, a dozen cookies is one each and two for Dad . . . Think toast with the breakfast porridge on schooldays, a sandwich each for those in school, two or three for Dad, and bread and butter with supper . . . often we came home from school to be greeted by the warm, homey scent of fresh bread, with a big pan of buns just out of the oven. Poke a hole in (fast!) with your thumb; add a chunk of margarine and top off with a spoonful of home-made jam . . . eat from the top down, carefully, so as not to lose a drop of warm, melting goodness . . .

      Mum would have LOVED one of Brunhilda’s sisters . . .

      I need to learn how to make date paste (when you are less busy; HA!)

      and I’d love your recipe for the green smoothies . . . again, no rush; have to send in my income tax first . . .

      I think you’re right about Delilah; either that or she really wants to please me . . . works for me 🙂 Thanks for the tip about reserving some in milk if I experiment with other media; it’ll save Christi the trouble of mailing me more . . .

      I’m eating, no fear! The first two batches are gone . . . well, I have a couple of muffins left, but not for long . . . 🙂

    • I can’t believe it was so easy! Making yogourt was more work than that. And I was expecting the first few batches to taste awful, but it’s just a bit ‘yeasty’. So I’ll try some in a smoothie this afternoon. Will let you know how it goes . . . Love back, Christi. I’m hoping for some of your cool coastal weather; either way, it will be pancakes for breakfast a couple days later next week 😉

Thanks for stopping by my blog! I look forward to reading your comments. ~ Linne

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