BREW YOUR OWN KOMBUCHA by Candis LeBaron
By Craig O’Hanlon on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 6:09pm
1 one-gallon glass jar (Jar should have large mouth)
1 scoby (AKA a “mother”) with 1-2 glasses of kombucha tea
4-5 bags of black/green/white tea (do not use plain herbal tea, it will not work)
1 cup of organic white sugar
Cloth- big enough to cover jar with band, thin like flour cloth or cheese cloth
Step 1. Bring 1 gallon water to a boil. Add bags of tea and brew about 5 minutes.
Step 2. Remove tea bags, and immediately mix in 1 cup of organic white sugar until completely dissolved.
Step 3. Let water cool until at room temperature. (too hot can kill the scoby, so be patient).Once cooled, pour into glass jar.
Step 4. Place scoby and the kombucha tea into glass jar. The scoby will usuall float at the top, but it’s okay if it sinks.
Step 5. Cover jar with thin cloth (cheese cloth or t-shirt cloth) and put a band around top to hold it in place.
Step 6. Brew for 7-14 days in cool place out of the sun. A new scoby will grow across the top of the level of tea or on top of the scoby if it’s floating at the top. After the new scoby gets a few millimeters thick, take a spoon and gently press down on the side of the scoby to get a spoonful of the kombucha. It should taste slightly sour and not very sweet. Once you’ve gotten it to a taste you like, you’re ready to bottle. After step 6, you can drink it like it is, BUT if you want to brew a kombucha with different fruit flavors and more carbonation, you’ll need to do secondary fermentation (step 7)
Step 7. Remove the old and new scobies, and place aside in separate container. Also take about 2 cups of the kombucha you brewed for those scobies to soak in. These scobies can now be used for your next batch.
Step 8. Get jars/bottles that are single or double serving size, 16-32oz. (you can use quart jars or pint jars too) Pick a flavor of juice (try to avoid orange/pineapple as they are too acidic. I like mango, cranberry, blueberry, peach). Add 2oz juice for every 14oz of kombucha. Put juice in first, then fill bottle with kombucha and SEAL TIGHTLY.
Step 9. Place these bottles in a box and let sit for another 3-7 days. Pick one jar to check or burp every few days. You can see how much bubbling you get when you open it and taste it for flavor/fizziness. If you leave them in the secondary fermentation process too long the bottles can explode, or a mess can ensue once you do open them. That is why I keep them in a box.
Step 10. Once the kombucha has reached desired fizziness/taste, place in fridge and drink as often as you’d like. You’ll drink it all before it goes bad, I promise. WARNING: Often a new miniature scoby (I call them scobabies) will grow in the bottles during secondary fermentation. Feel free to pull that out and throw it away. If you accidently drink one, it’s okay! The scoby might feel gross, but it’s good for you!