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Kefir Kommunity

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Welcome to Kefir Kommunity! This is your one-stop-shop for nutrition news from around the blogosphere. If it’s got to do with kefir or probiotics, chances are, it’s here. But you’ll also find cutting edge information, articles and links to stories about all things health – from workout trends to cool food science research, delicious recipe suggestions to expert Q & As. We love to share our passion for what we do with the best customers in the world, while offering you exclusive info on special events, deals, promotions and all sorts of other happenings at Lifeway HQ and beyond. We encourage  you to tap into the power of Kefir Kommunity’s blog by reaching out to us or fellow kefir fans with comments or questions. So make yourself at home, pull up a chair and stay a while. We promise to treat you right. 
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Recipes




Hanukkah Recipe Round-up

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 12/20/2014 10:37 AM
 
If you’re anything like a member of the Lifeway team, you end up rather uninspired in the dinner category this far into the holiday season. During Hanukkah, traditional recipes reign supreme (as they should), but after years of the same dishes, things can get, well, boring. That, you you’re just plain out of ideas for what to make.

Don’t worry, we’re here to help.

Today we’re bringing you a collection of our favorite Hanukkah recipes from the Lifeway kitchen, plus a bonus new recipe to turn to when you’re strapped for time. We’ve pulled two scrumptious desserts, a couple of savory side dishes, and our latkes-with-a-twist, all in one place.

Even though the holidays are a busy time, it’s still important to be assiduous when it comes to your diet (just because there’s kugel AND doughnuts, doesn’t mean you get to eat the both in one sitting). These recipes aren’t necessarily low on the calorie side, but they are all made with real, perishable ingredients that come from nature – no mystery cream-of-something soups or “flavored” ingredients to be found. Even more, they all contain a Lifeway kefir product in some fashion, so you know you’re eating a good source of calcium, protein and probiotics. Enjoy, and happy Hanukkah!

Kefir Baked Sufganiyot - Baked Jelly Doughnuts
Traditionally deep-fried and filled with jelly, we bake our doughnuts and indulge in a variety of different tasty toppings.


Latkes with Cranberry Kefir Relish
These traditional Hannukah fritters are typically served with sour cream or applesauce, but we top ours get a dose of Cranberry Kefir Relish for festive flavor.


Green Bean Dip with Crispy Artichokes and Onions
This one is from our Thanksgivukkah series from last year. Traditional green bean casserole takes on a Hanukkah flare thanks to artichokes and freshly fried onions.


Sweet Potato Kugel Pie
Our favorite Thanksgivukkah mash-up yet! Sweet potato pie meets Hanukkah kugel in this surprisingly simple recipe that’s as delicious as it is unique.


 
 
Curry Sweet Potato Rounds with Kefir Dipping Sauce
This side dish couldn’t be simpler! With just a few ingredients and little prep work, these sweet potato “gelt” coins are simply dressed and bake up in a flash. Even better, you can increase the recipe to feed a crowd of almost any size.



 
Sweet Potato Rounds
4-5 sweet potatoes/yams (try to find ones with a small diameter to make smaller "coins")
Cooking spray or olive oil
Curry powder

Strained Kefir Dip
1/2 cup strained Lifeway Organic Whole Milk Kefir
1/2 cup cream cheese
1 tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1-2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chive or parsley, chopped
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp minced onion
Salt, to taste

About a day in advance, line a mesh strainer with coffee filters, a double layer of cheese cloth, or a natural (untreated or dyed) paper towel. Rest the strainer over a bowl so it hovers (doesn’t touch the bottom), leaving at least 1 ½” of room between the bottom of the bowl and the strainer. Pour the kefir into the lined strainer, cover with plastic wrap or foil, and place in the refrigerator for roughly 24 hours to strain. After 24 hours, you should be left with a thick kefir “cheese.”

After 24 hours, remove the strainer, discard the liquid, and scoop the kefir “cheese” into a sealable container. It will keep in the fridge for about a week.

When you’re ready to make your dip, combine all dip ingredient together in a bowl and mix well. If you like your dip very smooth, put blend ingredients in a small blender. Refrigerate for at least an hour for the flavors to mesh.

Preheat your oven to 425°F and grease a baking sheet with cooking spray and foil, or prepare a baking stone.

Clean and dry your sweet potatoes. Slice them into rounds about ¼” thick. Lightly toss or spray the rounds with oil and place onto the cooking sheet. Dust with curry powder, salt and pepper.
 
Bake the rounds, flipping half way through, for about 20 minutes. The thinner the slices, the quicker they’ll cook. You want them to be firm enough to not fall apart when dipping, but cooked thoroughly.

When the potatoes reach room temperature, serve them alongside the dip. Garnish with additional fresh herbs, salt, pepper and oil.

4 Recipes for Healthy Snacking at Work

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 12/18/2014 12:05 PM

Eating well at work can be challenging. During the cold winter months, fresh fruit is out of season, holiday deadlines approach, and tempting baked treats flood break rooms without remorse. Think about it: you’re at your desk, you’re working hard, and you’re hungry. What will you reach for? Why, you’ll reach for that bon-bon, of course! Unless, that is, you’ve prepared ahead of time.


Healthy eating at your desk doesn’t have to be hard. In fact, it can be extremely easy! We’ve put together four/recipes that vary in degree of difficulty and preparation (perhaps by immediacy of hunger as well). Each contains a Lifeway Kefir product, so you can be sure you’re getting a healthy dose of satiating protein with each, along with tummy-taming probiotics. They also come together easily, are portable, and are delicious. Here’s to healthy holidays!

Difficulty Level: Easy
Kefir White Bean Dip with Cracker or 
Crudites

15 oz can great northern white beans, drained and rinsed
¼ cup Lifeway Lowfat Plain Kefir
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve with crackers or veggie sticks. Make it fancy: add some flair with different spices! Try cumin, paprika, Cayenne pepper, garlic or tahini. For a sweeter dip, substitute peanut butter for the olive oil and use Lifeway Raspberry Lowfat Kefir. Serve with sliced fruit.

Difficulty Level: Easier
Kefir with Granola, Fruit and Nuts

8 oz Lifeway Kefir, flavor of choice
2 Tbsp granola
Handful of dried or fresh fruit
Optional: chopped nuts or seeds

Pour the kefir into a bowl and top with a handful of fruit, granola and optional nuts/seeds. Stir and devour. Make it fancy: sprinkle the top with a healthy shake of cinnamon and a drizzle of honey.

Difficulty Level: Easiest
Farmer Cheese and Crackers

1 serving of crackers (we like 
these and these)
2 Tbsp Lifeway Farmer Cheese

There are two options here: either spread the cheese on the cracker and enjoy, or spoon the cheese into a small bowl or cup and scoop with crackers. Chew fully before swallowing. Make it fancy: find a spice that complements the crackers (pepper, curry, garlic, etc.) and sprinkle it onto the cheese before spreading/scooping.

Bonus Level: No Effort or Planning Involved Whatsoever


Ok, so a little effort and planning are involved. You have to remember to bring them and you have to open them, but that’s it! All three of these Lifeway products are high in calcium, protein, vitamin D and healthy probiotics!

Do you have a waist-saving snack strategy that helps you avoid the vending machine? 
What are your go-to office snacks?

Read More »

Kefir Baked Sufganiyot - Baked Jelly Doughnuts

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 12/16/2014 12:10 PM
 
Sufganiyot, also called sufganiyah, are a traditional dessert eaten during Hanukkah. Deep-fried and topped with sugar, they’re round, sugar-coated doughnuts filled with different flavors of jelly. They're also high in fat and sugar, meaning we have to be careful when we eat them (careful not to eat all of them, that is).

Like most doughnuts, sufganiyot are typically made with milk and deep-fried in oil. Understanding that buttermilk can often be substituted for milk, we couldn’t resist coming up with our own kefir-ized version. Ever mindful of our belts, we used our Lifeway Lowfat Plain Kefir in place of buttermilk and skipped the fryer all together (muffin tins are super handy). A few less than ideal attempts later, we’ve come up with an excellent recipe that we're excited to share with you today!


While sufganiyot are most often filled with red jam, they don’t have to be (especially if they're small, like ours). Whether you enjoy a different flavor of jam, prefer a creamy cheese, or go straight for chocolate, these kefir-ized treats are sure to be a staple at your holiday table for years to come. If you’re in need of filling inspiration, consider some of the following:

  • Farmer Cheese, raisins and mixed chopped nuts/seeds (with a dash of salt!)
  • Mashed banana and fudge
  • Homemade lemon curd and crushed almonds
  • Hazelnut butter and crushed pretzels
  • Chunky nut butter and shaved dark chocolate
  • Marzipan and chocolate sauce
  • Dulce de leche
  • Crushed pineapple, shredded coconut and coconut crème


Baked Sufganiyot - Baked Jelly Doughnuts
1 large egg, at room temperature
1/4 cup butter, at room temp, + 2 Tbsp butter, melted (for rolling)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups bread flour
2 tsp baking power
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar + 1/2 cup sugar (for rolling, if filling with jam)
Filling of choice (see above)

Lightly grease a mini muffin tin with cooking spray and preheat your oven to 350° F. In a bowl, sift the flour with the baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs, butter, vanilla extract and the sugar together until creamy.

To the wet mixture, add one third of the kefir, followed by one third of the flour, mixing until combined before moving on. Continue alternating between the kefir and flour until everything is incorporated. Let the batter rest for about five minutes.

After the batter rests, spoon about one tablespoon of the mixture into each mini muffin cup. Bake for 9-11 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean (may vary by type of oven). Remove from the pan immediately to cool.

Topping:

While the sufganiyot are cooking, set out two bowls – one with the remaining sugar and one with the melted butter. When the sufganiyot are no longer hot, dip the tops in the butter, followed by the sugar. Set aside on a cool surface or wire rack to dry and set.

After the they're are completely cooled and the sugar is set, poke a hole in the bottom of each 
sufganiyot. Using a pastry bag or plastic bag with a pastry tip, pipe/squeeze the filling, careful not to over fill. If the filling is chunky, try using a larger pastry tip. Alternatively, you can slice them open and spread your filling on each half. Enjoy with a glass of kefir or coffee!

Store on the counter in an air-tight container.

Read More »

Fall for Kefir: Cranberry Creme Brulee Kefir Mousse

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 12/15/2014 7:37 AM


Nothing could be easier than pouring a tall glass of Lifeway Kefir for a refreshing, and healthy dessert (except for taking a swig straight from the bottle!), but during the holidays, it’s nice to make things a little extra fancy. Fancy doesn't have to equal complicated or time consumig, though! Our recipe for Cranberry Crème Brulee Mousse requires no baking and contains no heavily processed ingredients. It has a tart and tangy flavor that will please the most discerning kefir fan, yet remains sweet, rich and decadent - it's sure to please a crowd.

No special torch is required with all the delicious crème brulee flavor in our special holiday edition Cranberry Crème Brulee KefirIf you'd l ike a sweet crunch, we suggest using a hard candy like peanut brittle and making a crumb topping to sprinkle on top. If you can’t find our holiday flavors (including Pumpkin Spice and new Eggnog!) ask your friendly dairy manager to bring some in on their next order, or substitute with one of our red berry flavors like Raspberry, Strawberry or Pomegranate.

Cranberry Crème Brulee Kefir Mousse

Makes 6 generous servings

Beat cream cheese until light and fluffy. Add cranberry jelly and sugar and beat on high until well combined. In a separate bowl, whip cream and kefir until soft peaks form (it helps to start with a chilled bowl). Add whipped cream into cranberry mixture and fold six times, so swirls of cranberry remain.

Spoon into crème brulee dishes and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving to set, or overnight. Sprinkle with peanut brittle topping (below), if desired.

Optional Peanut Brittle Topping: Using a food processor, chop the peanut brittle into crumbs.

Penne with Vegetables and Kefir Tomato Sauce

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 12/12/2014 8:37 AM

Are the cold temps, short days and countless holiday commitments leaving you uninspired at the end of the day? We’ve been there! This time of year, it can be an achievement just to put the laundry away. But don’t head for the frozen food section just yet – a healthy, comforting and delicious meal can be brought together in just a few steps! Yes, pasta has once again come to the rescue.

 


Pasta is often considered a “no-no” for calorie-conscious eaters, but it doesn’t have to be shunned completely. When eaten in moderation, it makes an energizing meal that keeps your hunger at bay for hours (and is perfect fuel for snow ball fights and sledding). Not only is our recipe filling, it’s also full of fiber and probiotics, thanks for the surprise inclusion of our Lifeway Lowfat Plain Kefir. Even more, it’s packed with immune system super starts in the forms of vitamins A, C and B6!

This recipe can easily be doubled (as long as you have a pot large enough!) to feed a crowd, or keep as leftovers throughout the week. If you don’t have the vegetables called for on hand, feel free to substitute with anything seasonal you have. We’ve tried it with mixed bell peppers, broccoli, summer squash and mushrooms – all are delicious! Any pasta will work, too. We recommend one that has crevices to pick up and hold the chunky sauce.

 
Penne with Vegetables and Kefir Tomato Sauce
Serves 6-8
 
1 lbs. gluten-free penne pasta
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 small zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/2 inch thick
1/2 large asparagus bunch, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 yellow onion, diced
1-2 teaspoons red pepper flakes + extra for garnish
1 28-ounce can high-quality crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, for garnish
Fresh basil, for garnish
 
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F and bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

Toss the zucchini and asparagus with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Place onto a rimmed baking sheet, season with salt and pepper. Roast until tender – about 20 minutes.

Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a medium/large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the diced onion and sauté for 3-4 minutes. Add the minced garlic and red pepper and cook for one minute, careful not to burn the garlic. Add the crushed tomatoes and turn the heat down to a simmer. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15-20 minutes, or until it reaches the thickness you desire.

While the sauce is simmering, cook your pasta according to directions for al dente. When the pasta is finished cooking, drain it and give it a quick rinse. Shake the colander 
well to remove as much water as pasta before adding the pasta to the sauce. Add the roasted vegetables and toss to combine. Stir in basil.

Before plating, mix in your kefir. It's important to make sure the kefir doesn't get too hot, otherwise all of the probiotics will die. Divide the dish among bowls and top with grated Parmesan cheese, basil and red pepper flakes to taste. Enjoy with a fresh salad and crusty French bread covered in Farmer Cheese for a vitamin and probiotic-rich meal that’s as comforting as it is easy to make.

That’s it; it’s super simple! What do you think, will you give it a try? Let us know how you like it and if you customize it (we bet our Greek Style kefir would make the sauce extra creamy and indulgent).

Last Minute Dessert: Peanut Butter Kefir Cups

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 12/9/2014 7:17 AM

Have you ever been in a pinch to pull together a dish for a last minute gathering? We certainly have! In fact, one of our Lifeway team members needed a dessert for an after work gathering just a few days ago. Instead of running to the grocery store to buy a box of generic cookies, we looked throughout our cupboards and our blog archive for something we could throw together quickly that would satisfy everyone!

This past March we came up with a delicious recipe for peanut butter kefir pie jars. With only a few staple ingredients (Lifeway Kefir, peanut butter, graham crackers and chocolate sauce) and a handful of steps, it’s the perfect solution for your spontaneous dessert needs. Feel free to substitute any cookie or sweet cracker you have the crumbles, if you don’t have any graham crackers. The recipe also doubles (or triples) very well, and can be made into smaller servings to feed a crowd.


Probiotic Peanut Butter Kefir Cups

Serves 4


* if you only have Lowfat Plain kefir, use that and add 2 tsp of vanilla extract and 1-2 packets of sweetener

In a large, cold bowl, whisk together peanut butter and kefir, adding kefir ¼ cup at a time. (Tip: whisk the peanut butter separately until smooth – it is much easier to incorporate that way). Place the bowl in the refrigerator chill until ready to serve.

When ready to serve, divide the chocolate crumbs into four small mason jars. Spoon the kefir peanut butter mixture equally into the four jars and drizzle the top with chocolate sauce to garnish. Feel free to add mint leaves or extra crumbs to garnish as well. That’s it - it’s easy as pie.


These pie jars are delicious! We can’t wait to make them again and experiment with the crumb base (mmm, vanilla wafers!). Do you have a go-to, “in a pinch” recipe that you can share?

Kefir Pumpkin Quick Bread

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 11/26/2014 3:25 AM

We hope you’ve enjoyed our Thanksgiving series so far. We’ve had a great time coming up with these  recipes and look forward to any feedback you have (and leftovers). Our third and final new Thanksgiving  recipes turned out to be the fan favorite in the Lifeway Kitchen. As comes with the end of every meal, we’re finishing this series off with dessert.


What would a thanksgiving feast be without a dessert? Not a feast we want to attend, that’s for sure. At the same time, we value our health (and our waist lines). With that in mind, we came up with a dessert we could feel good about eating, and feel good after eating. We’re calling it our kefir pumpkin quick bread (clever, we know). Instead of being laden with excessive amounts of refined sugar, refined oil and general nonsense, this bread is full of generally good for you ingredients while still being downright tasty.

To keep calories in check, we substituted a stevia for baking blend for the sugar, which has already been reduced from traditional numbers thanks to the use of ripe bananas. Molasses offers an iron boost, and the pumpkin puree adds moisture, even more iron, potassium and fiber. As it’s not overly sweet, it’s good for everyone (and perfect for the next morning). Feel free to add in any additional nuts or seeds to your liking.


 
Kefir Pumpkin Quick Bread

  • 1/2 cup Lifeway Lowfat Plain Kefir (at room temperature)
  • 1/2 Tbsp molasses
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 large ripe bananas
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs (at room temperature)
  • 2 Tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup stevia baking blend
  • Pepitas for garnish

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F with a rack placed near the lower third of the space. Grease a 9 x 5 inch bread pan with non-stick cooking spray or oil. Set it aside.

In a medium bowl, smash the bananas until it reaches a puree texture. Add eggs and whisk until well combined. Add kefir, vanilla, pumpkin, molasses and coconut oil and mix until combined.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, sugar, salt and spices. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until combined (careful not to over mix – a few lumps are ok).

Pour batter into the prepared bread pan. Sprinkle the top with pumpkin seeds and additional cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice, if you’d like. Bake for 55-65 minutes. After the first 30 minutes, cover the top with foil to prevent excess browning and burning. After 55 minutes, insert a toothpick into the center of the bread to test for doneness. It should come out clean. If it doesn’t return the pan to the oven and check every five minute until the bread is completely cooked.

Remove the pan for the oven and allow the bread to cool in the pan on a wire rack before removing. Enjoy smothered with butter, whipped cream cheese or spread of your choosing!

Kale Quinoa Salad with Cranberries and Farmer Cheese

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 11/25/2014 6:45 AM

Our second Thanksgiving recipe creation is a nutritional powerhouse – Kale Quinoa Salad with Cranberries and Farmers Cheese. So good.

When it comes to Thanksgiving side dishes, most tables are stacked with starchy casseroles, sugary fruit salads and butter-drenched vegetables laced with “cream of something” soup. While they can be absolutely delicious (once again, Green Bean Casserole?), they’re also heavy and leave us feeling fuller than we’d like.

To combat side dish sabotage, we’ve developed a simple kale and quinoa salad. On any regular night, this dish could substitute for a light dinner, as it’s full of complete proteins, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates. Served in smaller portions, it makes a great addition to a Thanksgiving plate for anyone who is watching what they eat.

What We Love About It

What’s not to love? Made with readily available, seasonal ingredients, this salad provides a spectrum of vitamins and minerals.

Kale
- Kale contains vitamins A, C, and K and folate. It also contains 3 grams of protein in one cup
Quinoa – quinoa is a plant-based complete protein and is full of fiber, lysine and magnesium
Pomegranate – pomegranate is high in antioxidants and vitamins A and K
Cranberries – cranberries contain antioxidants and are a known anti-inflammatory
Nuts – nuts provide an assortment of protein, fat, vitamins and minerals (they differ per nut)
Lifeway Farmer Cheese - our high protein, low fat, probiotic-rich soft cheese

 
Kale Quinoa Salad with Cranberry and Orange

Salad

  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • One bunch of Lacinato/Tuscan kale
  • Dash of salt
 
Dressing
 
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1½ tsp raw honey (or maple syrup)
  • 1½ Tbsp raw apple cider vinegar (or white wine vinegar)
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp minced shallot
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
 
Topping
 
 
Rinse quinoa with running water until the water runs clear. Transfer rinsed quinoa to a sauce pan with water and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Continue to about 12-15 minutes, or until the water is gone (be careful not to overcook).

Prep the kale by washing and drying it well. Remove the stems and finely dice or chop the kale into bite sized pieces. Place into a large mixing bowl and set aside.

After the quinoa has cooled for five minutes (but is still hot), fluff with a fork and transfer to the bowl with the kale. Mix well and let cool completely. The heat from the quinoa "cooks"
 the kale, making it more palatable.

In a small blender or food processor, blend the ingredients for the dressing. 
Pour dressing over kale/quinoa mixture and toss in nuts, pomegranate and dried cranberries. Top with a heaping ¼ cup of Farmer Cheese and mix with a salt and pepper to taste. Alternatively, serve salad into individual bowls and top with dollops of Farmer Cheese.
 

Fall Spicy Butternut Squash Soup

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 11/24/2014 1:06 PM

Thanksgiving week is here and we’re so excited to spend time with our families and chow down on some delicious, healthy, kefir-ized Thanksgiving dishes! We’ve once again been perusing our recipe archive for things to make. We wanted to stretch our culinary skills and incorporate our favorite seasonal ingredients into dishes everyone will love.

Last year, we made a Green Bean Casserole. It was delicious, but a bit heavy (and we know there will be one at every celebration. We love mashed potatoes, but you can’t go wrong with our Farmer Cheese Mashed Potatoes, so we’re not going to mess with it. How about dessert? Sweet Potato kugel, or pumpkin pie? They’re everywhere, and frankly, kind of boring. We want so surprise our guests with dishes they’re not tired of before they reach our table. Can you get behind that?

This week (starting today) we’re going to share with you three brand new kefir-infused recipes for Thanksgiving that we know you’ll love. So when you make your next grocery run, be sure to stock up on Lifeway Kefir (you know you’ll need it for the day after anyway!).

The first new recipe we’re sharing with you today is our version of butternut squash soup. Soup, though not common at the table, is a great addition to any fall meal spread. It’s warm and light and adds a different texture to the meal, making your dining experience all the more interesting.


All varieties of squash are abundant this time of year, but one of our favorites is the butternut. It’s rich in fiber, vitamin A, potassium, and most notably carotenoids, which are shown to protect against heart disease – never a bad thing! The subtly sweet, creamy flesh of the squash is typically paired with sweeter mates, such as apples and cinnamon, but we love the contrast a hot curry powder offers, in addition to the tang of our Lifeway Organic Whole Milk Kefir (you could sub plain lowfat, if whole milk isn’t available in your region).

You can buy canned or boxed butternut squash puree, if you’re short on time, but we definitely recommend roasting your own.


Fall Spicy Butternut Squash Soup

  • 2 cups cooked butternut squash
  • 1 cup Lifeway Organic Whole Milk Kefir
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 heaping Tbsp curry spice (heat to preference)
  • 1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
  • Basil, extra spices, pepitas and olive oil for garnish

Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees and place the racks in the middle. Cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds and cover the cut half with tinfoil .Place the squash skin-side down on a greased baking sheet and roast for roughly an hour (until fork tender). Roast for about an hour or until the squash is tender throughout.

Once the squash has cooled, scoop the flesh into a blender or food. Add the kefir, olive oil, and spices and stir.

Pour the soup into a sauce pan and heat over medium heat until desired temperature is reached. Garnish with more spices. Serve with a light salad or baked bread for a hearty meal, or as part of your holiday celebration!

Read More »

Pregnancy-Supporting Kefir Smoothie

By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 11/20/2014 3:00 PM
 
Last week, a loyal Lifeway kefir drinker called in requesting a smoothie recipe for his pregnant wife. He had read that drinking kefir was good for women who are pregnant and wanted to ensure she was eating the healthiest foods she could to ensure a healthy baby and a healthy pregnancy.

While a healthy diet is just one factor to consider when pregnant, we were happy to do some digging and for foods commonly recommended for pregnant women, and to develop a smoothie recipe that incorporates them!


From our research, we found the following foods recommended most:

Whole Grains – high in soluble and insoluble fiber; enriched varieties also contain folic acid

Beans – high in fiber and protein, they also contain iron, folate, calcium, and zinc

Eggs – a good source of protein and fat, they’re also high in choline

Salmon – rich in omega-3 fatty acids and a great source of protein and B vitamins

Dark, leafy greens – rich in calcium, protein, folate, vitamins, minerals and fiber – they’re nutritional powerhouses

Colorful berries – full of potassium and a slew of vitamins and minerals necessary for development

Walnuts – a high plant-based source of omega-3s, they’re also good sources of protein and fiber

Low fat kefir – like other low fat dairy, kefir is high in protein and calcium, but it also contains live and active probiotic cultures, which keep momma’s tummy happy and baby healthy

Looking at that list, doesn’t it seem like ANYONE could benefit from drinking a smoothie made from those fabulous ingredients? We’re certainly enjoying the following blend, – pregnant or not!


Pregnancy-Supporting Kefir Smoothie

  • 1 cup Lifeway Organic Whole Milk Plain Kefir
  • 1 large handful organic spinach
  • ½ cup organic frozen mango chunks
  • ½ cup organic frozen berries of choice
  • ¼ cup walnuts
  • 1 Tbsp ground flax seeds
  • Water and ice to taste/desired consistency

Put all ingredients into a blender (the higher the power, the better the consistency) and blend until smooth. Enjoy fresh!

Please note, we chose to create this recipe using organic ingredients intentionally, however use your discrection and source where you can. Check out this list of the Dirty Dozen and Clean 15 foods to eat organically and conventionally, where you can.

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