I have to laugh as I type that, because that is exactly how it is said in our home. Like this beverage is some sort of superhero or something..dun dundun….KOMBUCHA!
My kombucha journey has been an interesting one. I drove 200 miles away for a bottle of it the first time I grew a scoby, only to discover that it was actually bottled in the city I’m from. Nice. In my defense, I was in said 200 mile away town anyway, but the kombucha was a necessary stop on our trip.
I managed to not only grow a great scoby, and feed it til’ it was nice and fat, but I also ended up with about six of them. Sadly, when we made our move a couple of weeks ago, I left my kombucha brew in our “brewing cabinet” and my big beautiful scoby was invaded by ants. I was just sick.
Sooo…I had to start over, and thought I’d revisit the land of KOMBUCHA! with you all as I go through the process again.
Feel free to google the reasons to drink Kombucha. I’m not going to list them all. I’m not a doctor, and I cant prove it works, but I like the way it makes me feel, so there.
Ok, first things first. You need to grow a scoby (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast). Is that how you spell symbiotic? Scimbiotic? simbiotic? whatever. you get the point. This is where the magic lives. You’re going to basically take some sweet tea, add this living rubbery creature to it, and end up with a fizzy sweet and tart beverage that can change your life. Ok, I’m exaggerating…at least the change your life part. Sounds appetizing, no?
Ok. Go to Whole Foods or another health food store in your area. Pick up a bottle of raw plain, unflavored kombucha. Its about 2.50 at Whole Foods here. Take your lovely tonic home, add it to a large pickle jar (or other large glass container…no plastic or metal folks!!!!!!) Pour the kombucha into the jar, cover with a tea towel, secure with a rubber band, and LEAVE IT ALONE for 2 weeks. Leave it in the pantry or on the counter. Do not attempt to grow a scoby baby in the fridge.
Once the two weeks is up, take another large glass container, dump a cup of good ol’ white sugar into the bottom of it. I know, I know. White sugar is bad. Work with me here. The scoby needs it to grow. Sorry folks, its just the way it is. Next, brew some tea. Use 12 cups of water and four BLACK tea bags. Once the water is boiling, add it to the jar w/the sugar, give it a stir, and add the tea bags. Let is steep basically all day, until it is room temperature again. Once the tea is room temperature, add 1/2 cup of your kombucha liquid from your scoby “garden”, and give another stir with a wooden spoon. (remember, no metal!) Float your scoby on top, cover with a tea towel, secure with a rubber band, and put it back on the counter or in the pantry. In 7-14 days, it will be fizzy and fabulous. I like to strain it before drinking it as the yeast “floaties” (as we refer to them) gross me out. Also, drink it really, really cold.
As an added bonus, your scoby will have birthed a new scoby baby. Make sure that the scoby’s are kept in kombucha liquid at all times. Once you get your kombucha “routine” going, you should have some in the fridge keeping cool, some brewin’ away, and a jar of any scobys you dont care to float on your current brew.
Some tips: If it ever molds, you may have forgotten to add kombucha liquid to your brew. This is a necessary step. If you want to brew your kombucha with all of the scoby’s you have, you can. If you dont like the taste, try juicing some ginger, blueberries, or whatever you like really, and adding it to the kombucha when you serve it.
It’s a bird…Its a plane, No…It’s KOMBUCHA!