Its Tea time!
Today you will learn how to make kombucha! There is so many ways to make it, and i took many ideas to create the most economical and practical way for my family. I forgot to take a lot of step by step pictures along the way because i had a kombucha get together with some friends and was having so much fun. Though next week when we make our next batch i will just add the pictures to this post. Whenever i read a recipe i want SIMPLE easy steps make it much more doable.. and i like a little background information about it too!
Here is my kombucha ready to sit on the counter for many days- we like your sour!
WHY SHOULD YOU DRINK KOMBUCHA?
1. It is a yummy fizzy, slightly sweet tangy drink low in sugar, calories, and caffeine (the bacteria eats all the sugar)
2. It is cheap…compared to the store, you will save a lot of $
3. It is FUN to make
4. Kombucha is full of good bacteria to help replenish your gut. Good Gut bacteria will in turn help heartburn, digestion, acid reflex, bloating, and many more things. Though don’t drink it too much too fast because you may get die off detox symptoms. Start slow and listen to your body.
5. It is high in b-vitamins. So you will stress less because b vitamins help you stay calm and your memory will be better!
6. Helps detox your body and matain a healthy liver
7. boosts the immune system- 80% of the immune system is in the gut so if you fill you gut with good bacteria it will in turn help your immune system- this mean less sickness!
8. It can give you a afternoon pick up and increase over all energy levels.
9. Helps you loose weight because it improves digestion and is a good substitute for all you soda drinkers.
10. Make your skin clearer, heals eczema, and oily skin- apply plain kombucha topically and drink it as well for optimum results. (i have not tried this yet)
11. Good for hangovers- because it is a liver tonic
12. Helps constipation- this is because it aids your digestion
12. Improves the color of your hair- you can use it externally in the shower too!! (i have not tried this but I am going too)
WHAT IS KOMBUCHA MADE OF?
lactic acid: good for digestive system
acetic acid: it inhibits harmful bacteria. This gives the kombucha its distinctive smell and taste.
malice acid: used for detoxing in the body
oxalic acid: is a cellular production of energy
gluconic acid: effective against yeast like Candida
butyric acid: produced by yeasts and helps fight yeast in the body ( like heals like…again..just like the cancer mushroom)
nucleic acid: aids in healthy cell regeneration
amino acid: building blocks of protein- helps rebid mucles
enzymes: catalysts that speed the rate of reactions in the body- helps digestion
Vitamins B, C, beneficial yeasts, and living bacteria
Kombucha has been used for over 2000 years in China, Japan, and Korea. SCOBY’s were passed down from generation to generation. One story goes that a doctor in Moscow discovered that his patients did not get cancer. This was because to save on money, they brewed Chage or birtch-tree mushroom tea. Actually this birtch-tree mushroom is cancer on the tree!! So they were using cancer to cure cancer. Chage is related to the kombucha mushroom, but the real kombucha mushroom has many stories of origination. SCOBY stand for Symbiotic Colony of bacteria and yeast.
1. Wash everything you are going to touch…pots, jars, lids, spoons, your hands. You don’t want to get new bad bacteria on your SCOBY because that is how is gets weak and moldy.
2. Don’t let your SCOBY touch metal! and don’t ferment in plastic!
3. Never use sugar or tea that is not organic- pesticides, fluoride, and anti-caking agents can kill the SCOBY
4. Only use filtered water- chlorine can kill the SCOBY too.
5. Always keep an extra SCOBY on hand just incase yours gets moldy
6. always reserve 2 cups of fermented kombucha liquid for the next batch as a starter
7. Never put the SCOBY in hot water
8. Don’t use herbal tea because they contain oils that will damage your SCOBY. if you want to use it, put it in for the second fermentation.
9. Always throw away a moldy SCOBY as well as the batch of tea it was in and start over! you don’t want to take any chances and make yourself and family sick. I know this is a bummer..but that is why you have to remember to save an extra.
10. Keep your kombucha away from anything else that is fermenting as well as plants so mold spores don’t contaminate the SCOBY and kombucha batch.
WHAT YOU NEED:
metal pot (for boiling 4 cups of water)
gallon glass jar
cotton light towel/ cheesecloth
spoon (not metal)
6 t of tea (black/ green/ white) or 6 tea bags
1 gallon of filtered water
1 cup of reserved liquid from pervious batch
1 cup organic cane sugar ( don’t skimp on the sugar, the sugar will ONLY feed the bacteria, not your body) —-i used this site as a sugar resource in case you are interested in experimenting with sugars:
1. clean EVERYTHING, use 1. soap 2. rinse well with water ( you don’t want extra soap residue around your SCOBY) 3. spray with hydrogen peroxide- counters, lid, jar (i use food grade hydrogen peroxide form Guardian of Eden) 4. rise again with water 5. air dry
2. boil 4 cups of filtered water
3. add tea bags or loose leaf tea (no tea ball is necessary)
4. simmer tea for 10 minutes ( 10 minutes ensures all the nutrients from the tea are released)
5. turn off the heat and let steep for 10 more minutes
6. strain out tea bags or loose tea
7. while it is still warm stir in sugar until dissolved
8. pour sweet tea mixture into your gallon jar
9. fill the rest with filtered water ( room temperature) – but save room for your SCOBY, 1 cups of reserved liquid, and keep at least 2 inches from the top
10. pour 1 cup of previous reserved kombucha into jar (or if you don’t have that much add 2 TBS of raw ACV into jar)- this just jumpstarts the good bacteria
10. The water should be cool once you put in all that filtered water, so your SCOBY should be safe. You want the sweet tea temp below 80 degrees
11. put in your SCOBY ( smooth/ white/ creamy side up)!- make sure your hands are clean
12. cover with dish cloth and secure with rubberband
13. put it in a warm (70-85 degrees) dark place for 4-8 days – the warmer it is the less time you will need (we put our on the counter by our crock pot because our house is cool)
14. bottle it in smaller bottles for a 2nd fermentation (learn how to here) -and then you can flavor it and make it even fizzier!..post to come soon
We keep our kombucha by the crock pot so it stays warm and ferments faster
*Some people like it sweet so you will need less days for it to ferment. If you like it sour you might need to go a few more days. To test it stick a straw or plastic spoon and taste the liquid- no double dipping and no metal
*Allowing 8-14 days will make a vinegary taste which has a lot of medicinal properties and can even be used in the place of vinegar
* If you don’t want to make kombucha at a constant brew then store 2 cups of liquid or enough to cover the SCOBY and store it in a jar in the fridge. It will stay dormant for months without going bad. Though it is BEST to keep continually brewing new batches to keep the kombucha strong. Also a dormant SCOBY in the fridge is more susceptible to mold, so keep an eye on it.
* After your kombucha is done it will form a baby- keep the mother and baby attached for a 2-3 brews to allow the baby to grow 1/4 -1/2 inch thick. Then you can separate the two SCOBY’s and give the mother to a friend!
* When you give away a scoby, put it in a clean jar and cover with 1-2 cups of reserved kombucha liquid from your last brew
* you want a strong starter tea that is very acidic- this will help kill off the bad bacteria.
* For a faster and stronger fermentation you can add another cup of starter tea
*Black tea contains the most glucuroic acid, which is good . But Oolong tea makes a very yummy kombucha!
* extra kombucha tea FAQ
HAVE FUN!! I hope i didn’t overwhelm you with information, but you can read it over 1 or 2 or 3 times. Be patient with yourself, practice, and soon it will be second nature to brew kombucha! If you have any questions, please post below. Happy fermenting
~stay gutsy, caroline