Kombucha

One would think that someone, such as myself, who has for years been making herbal tinctures, fermenting vegetables and fruits, making yogurt etc. would also be into making and consuming kombucha. Sure, I knew a little bit about it but hadn’t given it a second look when I saw it in the stores. Finally, last week, I got around to tasting kombucha for the first time. I like it. Faye tried it and doesn’t care for it at all.

Kombucha is an effervescent, vinegary, slightly sweet beverage made from sweetened tea which has been fermented by a combination of various yeasts and bacteria.  Of course, I was determined to make my own and immediately ordered some SCOBY, a Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria & Yeast. The SCOBY came packaged in over a cup of starter tea, sufficient to make one gallon of kombucha. Since I would be using two 2 quart jars in two separate batches I was glad the SCOBY came in two pieces.

kombucha

 

For the first batch I used all black tea, and for the second a combination of black and green teas. I used 1/2 cup of sugar for each half gallon. Most of the sugar will have been eaten by the yeasts by the time the kombucha is finished, so this is not a high sugar beverage.

kombucha

kombucha

 

After the tea had steeped for awhile and the black tea had made its contribution I removed the bundle of tea and let the tea cool completely to room temperature. Then I added half of the starter tea, poured it all into the 2 quart jar and slid in the SCOBY.

kombucha

 

SCOBY is a truly strange substance. It is a slippery gelatinous mass that grows another layer each time it is used. The new layer will grow to the sides of the jar sealing the liquid below it from the outside air.

kombucha

kombucha

 

I covered the top of the fermenting jars with coffee filters to keep the fruit flies out and placed the jars in a different location than the cabbage I am fermenting to avoid cross contamination of the very different bacterias for the different types of ferments.

I will start sampling the kombucha after about a week. When it suits my taste I’ll bottle and cap it and leave it out for a few more days to build up effervescence before refrigerating.

kombucha



 


9 thoughts on “Kombucha

  1. I am so happy that you have started your kombucha adventure! I find the whole process relaxing, therapeutic even 😉 and hope you will enjoy your new weekly routine, too.
    You didn’t specify what kind of sugar you used. I had been using white sugar for a while but demerara or rapadura works much better. Share your thoughts, please. When it comes to the type of tea, my favorite is mixed black and green tea.
    Please, do not refrigerate your kombucha! It can make it sour and flat. If you want to drink it cold, just add a few ice cubes to the glass. Besides, why would you need to refrigerate it? You will have a new batch each week, so no need to store it bottled for long.
    Happy fermenting!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your helpful comments! I am really excited about this project. I don’t know why it took me so long.

      I thought about using Turbinado sugar but ended up using white sugar. I will use Demerara next time.

      Thanks for the tip about refrigeration. There isn’t enough space in the refrigerator anyway!

      Do you flavor your kombucha?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I love my black and green kombucha plain but I flavor my hibiscus kombucha (at the secondary fermentation stage) with raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, black currents, depending on what I have on hand. Raspberries are the best but I got homemade black currant syrup from someone once and it was amazing.

        Liked by 1 person

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