In the Kitchen
At the beginning of the year, I decided that I wanted to try and make kombucha. If you don't know what kombucha is, it is fermented tea. It does not taste anything like tea because of the fermentation process. I really like diet soda so I decided to try and kick the habit by replacing my daily Diet Coke with kombucha. Kombucha is naturally carbonated...more on that in a minute...
Basically, this is what you do. Brew a gallon of tea (we used 3 tablespoons of tea for one gallon) and add 1 cup of sugar. Let that cool down and then you add your SCOBY. It floats on the top and that is what makes the magic happen. It takes about 7-12 days (this is the initial ferment) and then you have kombucha!
|One gallon tea jar with scoby floating on top.|
There are LOTS of health benefits of kombucha. Again, taken from Wellnessmama.com:
"To be clear- it isn’t some magic pill or silver bullet, but it may help the body function well by supporting:
Improved pancreas function
Improved mood (helps with anxiety/depression)
Reducing Candida (yeast)
Helps nutrient assimilation
May be beneficial for weight loss"
After the initial ferment, I put the tea in bottles and added some fruit to do a secondary ferment. This is the part that makes the carbonation. At first, I used whole fruit, and then the next time, I made some fruit syrup and used that. You let it sit another 3 days and then put it in the fridge.
|Secondary ferment with huckleberries and raspberries|
Then, I started reading about continuous brew kombucha. You use a bigger container (at least 2 gallons) and then add sweet tea to the top each day and draw off the finished kombucha from the bottom. There are even MORE health benefits to kombucha that is in a continuous brew situation.
|My continuous brew jar of kombucha. We keep it on top of our water heater.|