Over a year ago, I meet with a nutritionist to discuss some issues in health I was having. One of the changes she suggested was to start drinking Kombucha tea daily. For those who do drink it but don’t make your own understand how expensive this can become, so I started making my own. The first couple of batches I made were not good; I had too much water, didn’t like the flavor of tea I used, too fizzy, not fizzy enough etc etc. After some tweaking, I am now able to brew consistent batches of tea for my liking. You may have to tweak your tea depending on where you live and your taste. Hopefully, this post will get you started in home brewing your own Kombucha. 🙂
Here is my Recipe: (per gallon jar…makes about 5-6 16 ounce jars of tea)
- 5 cups of regular water
- 7 cups of distilled water
- 3 green tea bags
- 2 black tea bags (do not use earl grey or any flavored tea)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1-3 SCOBY = symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast
- 1/2-1 cup starter Kombucha (you can use a store bought brand of plain Kombucha tea or ask for starter tea from the person you get the SCOBY from)
1st fermentation process:
1.Heat 4-5 cups of water to just before boiling temp. Place tea bags in water, let steep for 10 or so minutes. (Steeping time is dependent upon your taste. Make it how you like to drink tea.)
2. remove Tea bags, add sugar. Stir to dissolve the sugar.
7. cover with a cloth or coffee filter and secure with rubber band.
8. place jar in an out of the way warm spot with good airflow to allow the fermentation to occur. Mine takes about 7-10 days to be how I like it. (You’ll be able to smell a vinegar smell when it’s ready to taste. There should also be a nice new white SCOBY formed on the old SCOBY’s and carbonation bubbles.)
2nd fermentation process:
After you have your base Kombucha made, you can drink the tea as is or do a 2nd fermentation process to add flavoring. I LOVE GT’s Gingerberry flavor so I recreated my own.
- ginger root grated
- 1 bottle of Knudsen’s blueberry juice
- completed Kombucha tea
Use what ever flavor you like best. Ginger helps make the tea more fizzy than if I used blueberry juice alone. I also like the Knudsen’s Black cherry juice alone.
For best results in flavoring I start by peeling then grating the ginger, add grated ginger to the bottle of Blueberry juice, place in the refrigerator for a week to blend flavors.
Using clean glass jars, measure 1 oz of blueberry/ginger juice and pour into each glass bottle. Then fill the rest of the bottle with your Kombucha tea. Seal with the top to the bottles. Place bottles in a warm spot on a table/counter etc cover with a towel and let sit for 2+ days.
The longer the bottles sit the more they continue to ferment, again it’s all a matter of taste and home temperature. For me I have to let both the 1st and 2nd ferments sit a few days longer in the winter than summer. After a few days I put the bottles in the refrigerator to chill before drinking.
When you do a 2nd fermentation process you’ll notice a gel like glob forming in the bottle, that’s the new SCOBY forming from the sugar in the juice and it’s a good thing. I use a small tea strainer to remove any remaining SCOBY and ginger pieces as I pour into a glass to enjoy.
Enjoy your home brewed Kombucha Tea. 🙂
A good resource for fermented foods: Cultures for Health website.
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