Kombucha is amazing and weird and awesome all at the same time. Just about everyone knows about kombucha now as it is sold in lots of natural foods and health food stores. But the strength and powerful health affects of store bought kombucha cannot hold a candle to the homemade version.
Making kombucha is very easy, but it takes getting over the oddity of the S.C.O.B.Y. The scoby also called the mother or the mushroom. The acronym scoby stands for symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast.
If you are brave and you want the detoxifying, joint care, gut healing, immune boosting and digestive aid that kombucha has to offer, then you are ready to set out on an adventure to make your own.
Start by getting a portion of a scoby from a friend, or purchase a kombucha starter culture. Here is a scoby sharing link: http://www.kombu.de/suche2.htm also look up culture sharing on facebook.
You will need:
1) 1 gallon size wide mouth glass jar
2) scoby or starter
3) organic tea (black or green) - not herbal
4) 1 cup organic sugar (not honey or agave or substitutes)
5) spring water or water source without chlorine.
6) wooden spoon
7) round coffee filter & rubber band
8) plastic strainer
Directions: Prepare your scoby starter according to directions, or have your gifted scoby from a friend handy.
1) bring to boil 1 quart of spring water, remove from heat
2) add 1 cup sugar to the water and dissolve by stirring with the wooden spoon.
3) add 4-6 tea bags depending upon strength desired
4) steep for 30 minutes
5) pour the tea and sugar mixture in the 1 gal. jar
6) pour spring water in to come withing 2" of the top
7) Your water should be about room temperature, if not wait until it is
8) Add your scoby
9) put a coffee filter or thin cloth on the top and hold it on with a rubber band.
10) let sit for 10-14 days in a warm darkish area of the kitchen out of direct sun.
11) use a straw to lift out some of the liquid and give it a taste at 10 days. It can range from sweet to tart. If you like it more tart then wait longer.
12) At the desired flavor pour it into the pressure style bottles. Pour to just below the shoulder to allow head space and for adding fruit juice.
13) I add bits of crystallized ginger and 1/4 cup of juice (anything I have 100% juice)
14) Cap and wait another 7 days, then move to the refrigerator.
15) When pouring into a glass you will want a strainer to catch the "daughters" of the scoby which will form in a healthy batch.
Your scoby will increase in size developing a new layer with every batch. You can share these with others or you can chop them up and feed to animals. Our pigs, dogs and chickens love the extra scoby's.