OK, so before I get started with the how to’s of creating your own batch, I want to share with you all that we LOVE Kombucha. LOVE it. Addiction seems like a negative word to describe our feelings for this super fermented bevy, but we could be addicted to trying all commercial kinds that we can find as well as searching for those micro brewhouses that are filled with the alchemy of turning tea into this magical drink!
Kombucha (as well as all other fermented drinks/foods) are filled with health attributes that will make your SOUL SHINE. Not only are they delicious, but they help your body’s digestion process by adding all their healthy bacteria into your gut flora. The anti-oxidants in Kombucha help strengthen your immune system; enzymes and B vitamins boost your energy; gluconic acid and probiotics detoxify and glucosamines help ease joint pain.
I always have a batch going in my kitchen, and as you can see, my SCOBY is about to take over! SCO-what!? Yep, you’ll need one of these bad boys to get your batch going. A SCOBY(mother) is the culture that does the fermenting. They can be found on-line, dehydrated. I find that the best way to find one is go in to your local health food store and check on the bulletin board. People who start to make their own Kombucha also end up with a SCOBY that multiplies, and they divide and sell them.
If anyone lives close to us here at SoulShine Kitchen, give us a shout out and we can get you some of our mother.
Here’s what you’ll need:
1 SCOBY (with 1 C of original Kombucha that it came from, if possible!)
4 tea bags (I use organic black tea)
1 liter of boiled water
1 liter of room temp water
1 C organic cane sugar
1. Boil 1L water. Place 4 tea bags into a 1L mason jar, and fill jar with boiled water
2. Let the tea bags infuse for 15 minutes
3. Remove the tea bags, and add the sugar to this water. Stir until it dissolves
4. Let the water/tea/sugar mixture sit and cool until it is room temp.
5. Once cool, pour this mixture into the glass jar that is housing the SCOBY.
6. Add 1L of room temp water and voila!
Next, place some cheesecloth or paper towel over the mouth of the jar, and secure with an elastic. Find a nice spot for your batch to sit, preferably not in sunlight. Mark your calendars to have your first taste in 5 days. I use a long straw and stick it down below the SCOBY and take a sip. How long Kombucha takes to ferment enough depend on where you are in the world, and what the temperature is in your house. To know if it’s ready, taste and if you still taste sweet then it needs a few more days. At this stage I start to check it every day. If it goes too far (which has happened to me multiple times!) then you end up with a vinegary drink that just isn’t good! Once you find the taste balances not too sweet and not too much vinegar then your batch is finished.
You can use a ladle and scoop and bottle your batch into glass bottles (check out what we use-see picture-) Make sure you reserve a cup of your Kombucha for your next batch; which you can start right away or you can give your SCOBY a rest in the refrigerator.
Now, this Kombucha is fine to place in the fridge to get cold and drink, as is. OR, is you are like us and love the bubbles and flavours of commercial Kombucha, you are going to need to do a second ferment. Check out our recipe for SoulShine Bubbly.