How to Make Kombucha
Kombucha is a probiotic known for aiding digestion and helping the body ward off cancer. It’s also a great hangover cure. My guess is you already love it and already know how expensive a kombucha habit can be, so you want to make it yourself.
What you need:
- 1 gallon of water (distilled is good but if your tap water is tested and safe, go ahead)
- a big pot
- 1 cup of sugar
- 8 bags of black or green tea. If using loose tea, 4 tablespoons (a quarter cup) will do the trick. Use simple green or black tea. You don’t need fancy blends and no herbal tea.
- a big glass bowl: large enough to hold your gallon of tea. Other shapes can be used but a high surface-to-volume ratio is desirable for fermentation. Try to find something at least as wide as it is tall. Always use glass. Kombucha is acidic and toxins from ceramic, plastic and types of crystal will leech into your “healthy” drink.
- A “mother,” also known as a SCOBY (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast).
It can take awhile to track down a scoby if you want one for free. You might find one through the Kombucha Exchange Worldwide. I paid for my first one. If only I had known!
What to do:
- boil your water for 5 minutes
- add the sugar, stir until dissolved, boil for a few more minutes
- add tea, turn off heat
- cover and bring to room temperature (an ice bath can help if you’re impatient)
- put some fermented kombucha (comes with the scoby) in the glass container
- swish around
- pour the tea into the container (make sure it’s about room or body temp (slightly warm to the touch at the very highest)
- place scoby on top
- pour the remaining fermented kombucha on top
- cover with cheesecloth, paper towel or other breathable fabric
- let ferment! This will take about two weeks. Taste it!
- at the end you’ll have a baby culture and some nice kombucha to drink
- bottle it
- save a culture with a cup or so of kombucha for your next batch
- start again!