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Thursday, December 16, 2021

Kumiss - traditional milk beverage

Milk can be fermented by inoculating fresh milk with the appropriate bacteria and incubating it at a temperature that favors their growth.

Kumiss, prepared in dry inland Asia, is a traditional milk beverage containing about 2% alcohol, prepared by fermenting raw mare’s milk with lactic acid bacteria and yeast. Kumiss is also known by other names like koumiss, kumis, kymis, kymmyz.

It is an ancient beverage which Scythian tribes (Central Asia Steppes) used to drink some 25 centuries ago is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented mare's milk. This product is unique compared to other dairy foods, due to its mare's milk origin.

The characteristic feature of Kumiss is the fermentation of raw milk, involving the processing of only horse milk.

Kumiss is similar to the kefir; however, it is prepared by a liquid starter culture in contrast to the solid kefir grains used in kefir production.

Kumiss is made by fermenting mare's milk while stirring or churning. It is a dairy product involving lactic acid and alcoholic fermentation, which implies that during the fermentation, Lactobacillus bulgaricus acidifies the milk, and Saccharomyces lactis turns it into a carbonated and mildly alcoholic drink.

Finished kumis is milky white/greyish liquid, sourish alcoholic flavor and frizzy appearance. It is a beverage which does not contain curd particles in it. It has a unique taste, odour and aroma. No foreign odor is available in kumiss other than alcohol odor.

The quality of Kumiss is markedly influenced by factors affecting the quality of horse milk: grass eaten by horses, habitat and microclimate conditions of the herders’ home (temperature).

Kumiss possesses diuretic properties and helps in preventing intestinal putrefaction. The vitamin C level in Kumiss was 8-11 mg/100 ml. Kumiss was a valuable source of vitamin C supply for herders who did not ingest vegetables or fruit.
Kumiss - traditional milk beverage

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