Saturday, July 16, 2011

Beginning To Brew Kombucha

I was able to score some kombucha scoby today. I've been wanting to try brewing my own kombucha for quite a while, but didn't want to mail order a scoby. I now have 3. But only one jar large enough to brew in. I'll get one started and put the other 2 into the fridge until I scrounge up some more gallon glass jars.

Here they are, waiting in a little mason jar.

And here are my assembled ingredients for
starting my kombucha tea enterprise.

This first batch will be made with black tea. You can also use green or white tea. Different recipes call for anywhere from 4 to 8 tea bags. I split the difference and am using 6. Again, some say use 1 cup sugar, others say 1 1/2 cups. I like sweeter tea so went with the second amount. I can always adjust it next batch if it seems too much. I began by boiling a gallon of water in a stainless steel pot. I am using tap water and boiled the water for a full 5 minutes. Then I removed it from the heat, stirred in the sugar until dissolved, and threw in the teabags. I let them steep for 15 minutes. Then squeezed and discarded them. I am letting the tea water cool in the pot overnight, with a dish towel over it so that any remaining chlorine can dissipate. Chlorine is bad for your kombachu. You could always use distilled or filtered water and you wouldn't have to worry about it. In the morning I'll pour the tea into my one gallon glass jar, wash my hands well, and gently place one of the scoby onto the tea, with the rougher side facing down. I would then add 1/2 to 1 cup of kombachu tea to the new batch, but I don't have enough tea to do that, especially since I'll be making 3 batches at once. I'll be adding 4 TBS. of distilled cider vinegar, instead. The tea needs to have enough acidity to retard mold growth. Once I get everything in the jar I'll place a paper towel (I could also use a piece of cotton cloth but I don't have one I can spare right now) over the open jar and secure it with a rubber band. This will keep fruit flies and other foreign matter out, but still allow the culture to breathe. I'll then place the jar into the fermenting closet and leave it alone for 7 days. I'll let you know how this little experiment turns out. In the meantime, feast your eyes on the Belgiun Style Saison we bottled today. We have 37 bottles of this stuff and it's going to be fabulous. This is also my first experience bottling in the grolsch bottles. Love 'em.

Added at 9:42pm: Husbeast assures me that after being boiled for
5 minutes all the chlorine is gone from the water, so I have gone
ahead and put the first little scoby into its new home.

A view from the top. Ain't it cute!?!!!

It is now covered up and tucked safely into the fermenting closet. See you in 7 days, little scoby baby.

No comments: