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Create Your Own Kombucha

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Create Your Own Kombucha

Do you buy your kombucha on the daily? Have you ever wondered what it would be like to make your own? Now you don’t have to keep wondering with my how-to guide on how to create your own!


Supplies you will need:


  • Black tea bags
  • Starter tea and scoby bought online or given to you from a friend (or I will show you how to create your own scoby in this guide).
  • Large glass container with a snap top lid, I just bought mine from Big W and bought two jars to start. I now have four jars.
  • Flip top fermentation bottles. Also grabbed these from Big W, not exactly fermentation quality but they have done me well for a year. Just ensure it has a tight seal, as the fermentation process can allow the top to flick off.
  • Small funnel - I have found this quite useful when having to pour the kombucha preparation out of the jar and into the fermentation bottles.

NOTE: Before you start, treat this process as if you are conducting a surgery, ALL supplies and your hands are to be squeaky clean at all times to ensure your batch does not get contaminated with bacteria. Remember, your SCOBY is a bundle of good bacteria that needs to be well taken care of. 



Making a SCOBY


Ingredients:


7 cups of clean water.

½ cup raw sugar.

4 bags of black tea.

1 cup of unflavoured store-bought kombucha (I LOVE and always use the Remedy Kombucha Original).


Method:


  1. Bring your water to a boil in an extremely clean large pot. Once this has been done, remove from heat and add in your sugar. Add the tea and allow it to steep while the water cools down to room temperature. To test this, you can take a clean spoon and ensure it has cooled down enough (don’t double dip). Make sure it has cooled down to room temperature because if you add in your store bought kombucha this can kill the good bacteria.
  2. Take your mixture and pour into your jar, then add in your store bought kombucha (if you are using two jars make sure you pour half of the store bought kombucha into both jars evenly).
  3. Usually this is when people cover their mixture with a tightly wound cloth over the top, this is why I have suggested a snap lock jar so we can skip this step. Snap your jar shut and put it away into a dark space at room temperature (for example, I have an old tea towel laid across the bottom of my butlers pantry, this is where my kombucha sits and ferments). 
  4. Usually a SCOBY takes about 2-4 weeks to form on the top of your mixture (ensure that it is approximately ½ cm in thickness. 
  5. Now that you have your SCOBY, it is time for your first fermentation. Hooray!


First Fermentation


A quick note before we start brewing our first fermentation, this process takes quite a few tries before you can perfect your recipe, so please do not be disheartened if you make a mistake. I once waited a whole day for my sweetened back tea mixture to cool down, and then realised once cooled, that I had not added the raw sugar (which is the heart of the fermentation process). I had to empty that mixture down my kitchen sink and start again.


Ingredients:


14 cups of clean water.

1 cup of raw sugar.

8 bags of black tea (some individuals even use green tea, I like black tea better).

2 cups of unflavoured kombucha (starter fluid from previous batch or you can use store bought kombucha)

1 scoby per jar used.


Method:


  1. Bring your water to a boil in an extremely clean large pot. Once this has been done, remove from heat and add in your sugar. Add the tea and allow it to steep while the water cools down to room temperature. To test this, you can take a clean spoon and ensure it has cooled down enough (don’t double dip). Make sure it has cooled down to room temperature because if you add in your store bought kombucha this can kill the good bacteria.
  2. With exceptionally clean hands, remove your SCOBY from your jar and place onto a clean plate. Pour your sweetened tea in with your starter tea and pop your SCOBY back into the mixture.
  3. Secure snap lock lid on jar and pop into your dark space at room temperature. This first fermentation can take anywhere from 5-10 days.
  4. On day 5, I will grab my mixture and a clean spoon to test the mixture. I prefer my tea to be strong and less sweet. If you would like your kombucha to be on the sweeter side, make sure it has less time to ferment as the SCOBY will not consume all sugar molecules present in jar. If you would like your kombucha to be on the stronger side, leave it to ferment for approximately a week to 10 days, ensuring you test in between. A stronger taste will be more on the acidic side.
  5. Once you are ready to move onto the second fermentation, leave at least 1 ½ - 2 cups of this batch in your jar. This way you can use it as a starter fluid in your next batch. 


Second Fermentation



Ingredients:


Homemade kombucha from your first fermentation.

A form of sweetener (I most commonly use juice from a lemon, lime, strawberry or orange).


Method:

  1. The second fermentation is my absolute favourite part of the process, this is where you get to choose your flavours!
  2. Funnel your mixture into your bottle/s, leaving approximately 3cm space from the top of the bottle (during fermentation, this liquid may move upwards due to increased pressure). 
  3. Add your chosen sweetener. For example, my last flavour that I tried with my last batch was ½ freshly squeezed orange and lemon juice.
  4. Once you have flavoured your tea, seal tightly with lid. 
  5. Let this mixture ferment for 3-10 days. Again, if you would like your kombucha sweeter, test earlier. If you would like your kombucha stronger, test a bit later on. I usually leave mine ferment for 7 days, as I like it stronger in taste. 

SERVE and start your process again when ready, just do not leave SCOBYin starter fluid for too long (I don’t leave mine for more than a month as mixture can turn rancid.  

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