Friday, April 12, 2013

Kombucha

I'm a Kombucha brewer and drinker. More so in the warmer weather than in the cooler months. Now that it is warming up I'm starting up my brewing station. Last summer I was brewing three gallons a week and drinking it all myself as hubby doesn't appreciate it. I haven't been able to recruit my daughters either. That's okay, I like it!

To start this season, I decided to take the 30 Day Kombucha Challenge by Hannah Crum, The Kombucha Mamma. I started a new brew today taking a SCOBY daughter from my current mother.

The brew I make today will take seven days to mature. Then I will have another daughter (or some say baby) SCOBY and will do two gallons the following week, one jar using each SCOBY

Beginning May 1st I will have enough to drink daily until the next batch is ready in about another seven days!





My current mother SCOBY is on the left and I'm separating the daughter on the right. I'll compost the mother as she is past her prime and just use the daughter for the new brew
 








What you need to make a batch of Kombucha:

www.theurgetopreserve.com
Ingredients for Kombucha
* a SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast)
* one cup of saved Kombucha liquid from previous batch
* one cup white sugar 
* 4-6 tea bags (caffeinated tea - black or green or combination of both) 
* gallon jar
* water (mine comes from a well - don't use treated water with chlorine, etc.)
* container to heat water
* bottles for the finished Kombucha
* funnel








Heat 6 cups of water until very hot.
Add sugar to heated water, stir to dissolve.
Add tea bags.
Steep 5-7 minutes, then remove tea bags.






 


Pour "tea" into gallon jar and add more water to fill to three quarters of the jar. Combined liquid should be tepid.

Add SCOBY, Kombucha liquid, and then more water to bring liquid level up to within 1-2  inches from the top.













Cover with cloth or paper towel and secure with the rubber band.
Set in a warm place out of direct sunlight (unless jar is opaque) darker is better.
Do not disturb for 7 days.





After 7 days, or when you are ready to taste, gently insert a straw beneath the SCOBY and take a sip. If it's too tart, then reduce your brewing period next time.  If too sweet, allow to brew for a few more days.  Continue to taste every day or so until you reach your flavor preference. It will finish sooner in warmer conditions, thus making tasting necessary.



 

Pour into storage bottles, using funnel if necessary. Try to fill completely leaving little if any air space.

Drink as desired! Start off with 4-8oz on an empty stomach in the morning, then with meals, listen to your body! Always drink plenty of water, too!









Lots of debate has ensured over the years about the benefits of Kombucha. I'm not going to go into all the ins and outs of it, but I do want to include a few links to what I've found on the internet while trying to get answers to my own questions. Please check out these links and do your own search. As a disclaimer - I don't want anyone to assume I'm advocating the use of this drink for heath benefits. You can discern that for yourself.


Overview -  Article with up to date info on Kombucha

Commentary - Michael R. Roussin, "Analyses of Kombucha Ferments"

Interview - Hannah Crum with Michael R. Roussin

Research - Effects of chronic kombucha ingestion (BTW, it's positive!)

Commentary - Stuart Thomson, GAIA Research

Challenge - 30 Day Kombucha Challenge Site





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