Lacto-fermented veggies are definitely different to other fermented foods because they're fermented by the lactobacteria instead of outside agents such as vinegar. In fact, properly prepared lacto veggies are probably the easiest probiotics for anyone to tolerate.
Regarding kefir: I agree that washing the grains is a complete waste of time, but I doubt that caused you to have bloating. It's more likely to be because of lactose. I suggest you double ferment your kefir by straining it after 24 hours as usual then placing the strained kefir in an airtight container for a further 24 hours(shaking regularly and opening to release the CO2 that builds up). This reduces the lactose to almost nothing and makes it much more tolerable for most people until they build up a resistance.
Here is another probiotic option based around lacto veggies that's very effective and easy.
Cabbage is a vegetable that is teeming with lactobacteria. No starter is
needed for making rejuvelac. Just start one morning by blending together 1
3/4 cups (420ml) distilled or purified water plus 3 cups (720ml) coarsely
chopped, loosely packed fresh cabbage. Start the blender at low speed and
then advance the blender to high speed and blend for 30 more seconds. Pour
into a jar, cover, and let stand at room temperature for 3 days. At this
time, strain off the liquid rejuvelac. The initial batch of cabbage
rejuvelac takes 3 days to mature, but succeeding batches take 24 hours each.
Each morning after straining off the fresh rejuvelac, blend together for 30
seconds at high speed 1 1/2 cups (360ml) distilled or purified water plus 3
cups (720ml) coarsely chopped, loosely packed fresh cabbage. Pour into a
jar, add 1/4 cup (60ml) of the fresh rejuvelac just strained off, cover,
shake and let stand at room temp. until the next morning.
You can also make cabbage rejuvelac without a blender by chopping the
cabbage very fine and using 2 1/2 cups (600ml) finely chopped, loosely
packed cabbage listed above. The amount of distilled or purified water used
should remain unchanged.
Good quality rejuvelac tastes similar to a cross between carbonated water
and the whey obtained when making yogurt. Bad quality rejuvelac has a much
more putrid odour and taste and should not be consumed. Always avoid using
tap water when making rejuvelac because chlorine has been added to it for
the purpose of killing bacteria of any kind.
Drink each day's rejuvelac during the course of the day by taking 1/2 cup
(120ml) 3x a day, preferably with meals.
To implant a healthy population of lactobacteria in the intestinal tract,
1-3 months of taking rejuvelac are required. Keep taking rejuvelac daily
for a minimum of one month but for however long necessary until you obtain
reasonably bulky, well-lubricated stools on a day-after-day basis while
eating a diet moderate in mucoidforming activity. If the stools become much
less bulky or less lubricated when the rejuvelac is stopped and no change in
diet has been made, the implantation was probably unsuccessful and should be
tried again. Including cabbage, cabbage juice, or sun chokes in the diet,
while rejuvelac is being taken can greatly assist the lactobacteria
implantation process. When rejuvenating the digestion through an appropriate
natural-healing program, 2-3 months of taking rejuvelac should be performed.
Robert Gray - The Colon Health Handbook
PLEASE NOTE: You must use sterile equipment, cabbage, water and containers as possible. Wash the blender, and any containers in very hot water first. Peel the cabbage well and then soak in a weak bleach solution for ten minutes. Soak in filtered or distilled water. Use plastic wrap to give an additional seal to the glass container when you screw on the lid. Then pass the mixture through a strainer or cheese cloth. Throw away the pulp and place the liquid in a glass jar and refrigerate. Drink one-half cup 2 or 3 times a day. To make a second batch only requires one day, instead of three. Blend cabbage and distilled water as directed above and add ½ cup of the last batch of cultured juice to the new batch and cover with a plastic or cellophane sheet. It will be ready in just 24 hours. This process can be repeated indefinitely. Its worth pointing out that this extraordinarily effective detoxification protocol costs only pennies a day. White Cabbage is best.
Wheat is a grass and whole wheat berries are teeming with lactobacteria. No starter is needed for making rejuvelac. Just add two cups of distilled or purified water to one cup whole wheat berries....cover and let stand at room temperature...sterilize container and lid. Cover jar with cheesecloth, piece of nylon stocking, or nylon mesh. Leave at room temp and it will be ready to drink 2-4 days until bubbles appear on top. Strain off the liquid.do not shake jar.and drink. Then add more water and repeat..You can do this for ten days with the same berries. After the initial day and one half the rest will be ready in just 24 hours. If you use millet seed they will act the same..but you can only use it for four days or it will be too weak to be of any value.
Smell the drink before using it. If the odour is offensive, do not use it. Sometimes the drink gets contaminated by other bacteria strains.
Don't expect this to taste like your favourite soft drink. It has a peculiar and unusual tang. This drink implants friendly bacteria into the intestinal tract much more effectively than eating yogurt or taking acidophilus tablets