Make Your Own Kombucha
When I first learned about kombucha I was intrigued to say the least and very curious about the amazing health benefits that kombucha possessed.
If you've never tried kombucha it has a pleasantly tart yet sweet flavour and a wonderful fizz to it that in combination is unbeatable especially when you realize the health benefits that come along as part of the package.
I have brewed kombucha in the past and this week attended a function where kombucha was served and it reminded me just how wonderful and refreshing this beverage was and so I decided that it was time to pick up this hobby anew! Fortunately the hostess had an extra wonderful sized scoby (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast) that she so generaously donated to me.
So if you have been thinking of trying your hand at making this wonderful beverage, now is your chance. Give it a try and keep us posted!
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding and wondering about the safety of Kombucha during these times, I urge you to check out this amazing informative article By Mom Loves Best titled: Is Kombucha Safe To Drink During Pregnancy And Breastfeeding?
3 1/2 quarts water 1 cup sugar (regular granulated sugar works best) 8 bags black tea, green tea, or a mix (or 2 tablespoons loose tea) - I used a wonderful jasmine green that I love. 2 cups starter tea from last batch of kombucha or store-bought kombucha (unpasteurized, neutral-flavored) 1 scoby
Stock pot for brewing tea 1-gallon glass jar (clean and sterilized) Several layers cheesecloth or coffee filter to cover jar
Elastic band (to fasten cheesecloth over mouth of jar) Bottles or jars for finished product Small funnel
Note: Avoid prolonged contact between the kombucha and metal both during and after brewing. This can affect the flavor of your kombucha and weaken the scoby over time.
Bring the water to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in the sugar to dissolve. Drop in the tea and allow it to steep until the water has cooled. Depending on the size of your pot, this will take a few hours.
Once the tea is cool, remove the tea bags and stir in the starter tea. (The starter tea makes the liquid acidic, which prevents unfriendly bacteria from taking up residence in the first few days of fermentation.)
Pour the mixture into a 1-gallon glass jar and gently slide the scoby into the jar with clean hands. Cover the mouth of the jar with a few layers tightly-woven cloth, coffee filters, or paper towels secured with a rubber band.
Ferment for 7 to 10 days: Keep the jar at room temperature, out of direct sunlight, and where it won't get jostled. Ferment for 7 to 10 days, checking the kombucha and the scoby periodically.
It's not unusual for the scoby to float at the top, bottom, or even sideways during fermentation. A new cream-colored layer of scoby should start forming on the surface of the kombucha within a few days. It usually attaches to the old scoby, but it's ok if they separate. You may also see brown stringy bits floating beneath the scoby, sediment collecting at the bottom, and bubbles collecting around the scoby. This is all normal and signs of healthy fermentation.
After 7 days, begin tasting the kombucha daily by pouring a little out of the jar and into a cup. When it reaches a balance of sweetness and tartness that is pleasant to you, the kombucha is ready to bottle.
Before proceeding, prepare and cool another pot of strong tea for your next batch of kombucha, as outlined above. With clean hands, gently lift the scoby out of the kombucha and set it on a clean plate. As you do, check it over and remove the bottom layer if the scoby is getting very thick.
Measure out your starter tea from this batch of kombucha and set it aside for the next batch. Pour the fermented kombucha (straining, if desired) into bottles using the small funnel, along with any juice, herbs, or fruit you may want to use as flavoring. Leave about a half inch of head room in each bottle. (Alternatively, infuse the kombucha with flavorings for a day or two in another covered jar (my favourite is ginger), strain, and then bottle. This makes a cleaner kombucha without "stuff" in it.)
Store the bottled kombucha at room temperature out of direct sunlight and allow 1 to 3 days for the kombucha to carbonate. Until you get a feel for how quickly your kombucha carbonates, it's helpful to keep it in plastic bottles as it may explode. Refrigerate to stop fermentation and carbonation, and then consume your kombucha within a month.
Clean the jar being used for kombucha fermentation. Combine the starter tea from your last batch of kombucha with the fresh batch of sugary tea, and pour it into the fermentation jar. Slide the scoby on top, cover, and ferment for 7 to 10 days.
And that is it!!! If you have any questions feel free to contact us or comment below.