There comes a time for every health-loving vegan, every trend-loving hipster, and every ferment-loving culture-fiend, when it’s time to learn to make kombucha. And why not? Buying it retail is upwards of $5 a bottle, produces a fair amount of single-use package waste, and sometimes the flavor choices are…questionable. Preparing your own kombucha can be a little addictive, especially since the basics are easy to master, and a virtually endless amount of tweaking and flavor combinations can radically alter the outcome! It’s such a rewarding practice that you’ll probably be making your own by the gallon every month in no time!
This recipe uses a combination of ceylon and sencha with organic sugar and will have 2 ferments over the next 20 days! Basic recipes below, look for amazing flavor recipes in PART 2!
Make your own organic kombucha:
1 kombucha SCOBY-mother (Ask a friend or try this method to grow one!)
1 gallon* glass container, sterilized (or well cleaned, wiped and dry)
4 tablespoons black or green unflavored organic loose leaf tea
13 cups of water
1 cup organic sugar
2 cups of unflavored starter kombucha (I like Health Ade Original or GT Original) and after your first batch proactively save some!
(*look below for different size recipes)
1. Boil the water in a clean pot ( make sure there are no particles or soap residue) before you start. After it boils turn off the heat.
2. Add the tea (in tea strainers) and sugar and stir until sugar dissolves and tea steeps — 5-7 minutes. Remove the tea, and do not over-steep.
3. Let the sweet tea cool completely, but keep it covered. You can use an ice bath to cool down the pot faster if need be.
4. Place a kombucha SCOBY-mother in the bottom of your clean glass container, with the starter tea and let warm to room temperature, covered. Basically, you want to limit anything else getting into your brew, and most especially FLIES!
5. Strain the room temperature tea into the glass container with the mother and the starter kombucha. Cover the container with a dishrag and rubber band, ensuring that nothing except air can get in– FLIES ARE RESOURCEFUL, don’t risk it. Let ferment for 10-14 days out of direct sunlight (less time for warm rooms and more for cold!)
6. Your brew will grow a baby SCOBY on top that completely covers the top surface of the batch in that time, although it may fall or shed which is ok! Your baby forming means your brew is fermenting nicely. Keep an eye on the bubbles forming around the edges of the baby too, more bubble action means more fermentation which means more carbonation, and after a point a more sour and vinegar flavor. Feel it out for your taste.
7. Remove both cultures (mother and baby) and return them to your SCOBY HOTEL, reserve 2 cups* to use as starter for your next batch, and transfer the rest of this batch to your swing top bottles or airtight containers and flavor as desired with fruit, juice or ginger and lemon, let your 2nd ferment brew for 5-10 days until desired flavor and carbonation is achieved! Enjoy!
1.5 Tablespoons Tea
2.5 Cups Water
1/4 CUP Sugar
1/2 CUP Starter Kombucha
2 GALLON RECIPE
8 Tablespoons Tea
2 CUPS Sugar
28 CUPS Water
5 CUPS Starter Kombucha