mystery fermentation! ID?

My aunt gave me some “things” yesterday that brew a bacterial something-or-other that seems a lot like kombucha. She called it “chibiko” which just basically means little teeny thingies. Real helpful. I’m supposed to feed them brown sugar every day and put water in, they ferment and produce a juice that tastes like raisins and is supposed to be good for your internal flora. Towards the end of the day it got a tang almost like rejuvelac. The “things” are about the size of barley grains, clear and colorless. They actually look a lot like clumps of cornstarch when you’re making gravy or a sauce.

Anyway, I’m interested- anybody know what this stuff is? Is kefir starter the same kind of thing? I haven’t noticed any intestinal distress yet (but it’s only been 24h).

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