Tell us about your flock (we love pictures too)
I just add water (or sometimes old milk, broth, veggie water, whatever) at the time I am dishing out the feed. Sloppy oatmeal consistency. If I am ambitious, I make a pailful for the next morning at the same time. By next morning the liquid has all been absorbed so I might toss in some more liquid - or not.
Soaking long enough to ferment is great, but I don't mess with it in the winter. I know fermenting has all kinds of benefits, and I'll probably start that up again when I have some breathing room ( garden and hoop coop take precedence right now).