Kombucha Basics

IMG_3027Neither of us enjoy the taste of soda. It’s too sweet, bothers our stomaches, and generally makes us feel sick. But we can’t get enough of kombucha! Varying in flavor from tart to sweet, it’s easy to make kombucha your own with flavorings, brew times, etc. We’ve mastered the art of making kombucha with a hectic schedule– with our system, it takes less than 10 minutes a week!

Delicious, cost effective, and excellent for your intestinal health. Below is an introduction to making Kombucha. If you’re already an expert and just looking for flavor ideas, check out our page here. If you’re still new to kombucha, read more about it’s history and health benefits here.

To start:

The minimum needed to start brewing is

  • Tea
  • Sugar
  • a gallon jar
  • bottling containers

Tea

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My favorite tea for kombucha is Oolong. It provides the lightest flavor and color, which is ideal for flavoring your brew. Black tea is nutrient dense to the mother, but has a darker and more present flavor. Green tea provides a deliciously light flavor, but requires 25% black tea to maintain proper nutrition of the scoby.

Tea Flavor Color Special Instructions
Black (Assam, English Breakfast….) Dark, smoky Dark  –
Green (Jasmine, etc) Light Light Requires 25% black tea
Oolong Light Light  –
White Light Light Requires 25% black tea
Herbal Tea Not suitable  –
Flavored tea (Earl grey, chai, Not suitable  –  –
Coffee Dark! Dark Use a spare scoby, as your brew will turn rancid after a few uses.

Flavored teas like earl grey, chai, and fruity black teas use oil in their blends, which will cause your scoby to turn rancid over time. This is why you should always use a spare scoby when making Coffee Kombucha.

Herbal tea, green tea and white tea are nutritionally deficient and therefore require 25% black tea.

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Unrefined, organic cane sugar is the best choice. Sugar substitutes (agave, stevia, etc) are inappropriate, because they don’t provide the proper nutrition for the scoby. Honey, maple syrup and date sugars risk adding particulates and bacteria to the brew.

Equipment
The minimum supplies needed are a gallon jar and bottling containers. Until you decide on the type of equipment you’d like to use, mason jars, old GT bottles, anything will work. The gallon jar is perfect for brewing, but once you get in to making kombucha you’ll want to size up!

I use a 2 gallon container with a spout, for ease and to reduce how often I clean my equipment. With a continuous brew method, I generally clean my brewing container every three months.

 

 

Next step….flavorings!

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