Recipe Corner Cooking Techniques

Kefir: Getting Chummy with Your Tummy

Strawberry Swirl MilkshakeWe'd like to introduce our new fermented friend, kefir.

If you're already a yogurt fan, you'll enjoy kefir's flavorful personality and drinkable ease. Like yogurt, kefir is a probiotic dairy product, but its taste is brighter and slightly more distinctive -- fizzy, even -- earning it the hallmark reputation as "the champagne of milk."

Although the probiotic diet trend has elevated kefir's presence on the health radar, don't dismiss it as a food fad: Kefir originated in the Caucasus and migrated throughout Eastern Europe and Western Asia for millennia. Rapidly gaining favor among us tummy lovers, the versatile drink made its way to the Americas and (ta-dah!) Fiesta store shelves - in the dairy aisles.

Because kefir contains yeast, it's great for making sourdough bread. It's also a handy substitute for buttermilk, or even for pouring over a bowl of cereal. Many people even use kefir in smoothies as a switch from their usual yogurt. We've heard of people using it in desserts (cheesecake, cookies and ice cream) and pasta sauces, but we haven't seen a recipe for that. Let us know if you have any other ideas for kefir - we're always interested in new ways to use food!

Share a bottle of this belly buddy and toast to your health.