(Yield : 2 quarts)
2-4 beets, depending on size
4 tsp sea salt OR 1 tsp sea salt plus 2 tbsp whey or sauerkraut juice
2 quarts filtered water
Scrub beets and remove tops and tails. Chop beets into 1⁄2-inch pieces and place in a half-gallon jar. Add salt and, if using, whey or sauerkraut juice. Fill jar with water, leaving 1 inch of headspace. Cover the jar with an airlock lid or a muslin cloth secured with a rubber band. Culture at room temperature for 2-8 days or until desired flavor is achieved. You should see bubbles forming in the kvass during this time. Taste kvass starting at day two until desired flavor is achieved.
Once the kvass has fermented to your liking, you have two options. Option 1: Put a tight lid on the jar and move to the refrigerator. The kvass flavor will continue to develop in the fridge. Strain and enjoy! Option 2: Strain kvass into glass bottles designed to withstand pressure. Close bottles and let them sit at room temperature for 1-2 days to build up carbonation, then refrigerate.
Try flavoring your kvass with lemon or orange peel or spices such as ginger, cardamom or cloves.
Kvass tastes so nice, why not ferment it twice! Save the beets from your strained kvass, add water and 1 tsp sea salt to the beets, and culture at room temperature as in the original recipe. This makes a second, slightly weaker batch of beet kvass.