Kombucha! (Growing SCOBY and First Ferment)

So we finally did it, we finally went full crunchy and started making kombucha.

There were several failed attempts at ginger beer and we’ll probably write a post about that in the future. We thought we might be able to get away with making fizzy drinks that way and avoid inviting a SCOBY into our home. No such luck.

SCOBY

Blech.

I really, really, really did not want to pay for a SCOBY. I especially didn’t want to buy one on Amazon, or one that was packaged in plastic. Wasn’t the point for us to be making this stuff at home to avoid buying bottled drinks?

Luckily, there are instructions available online about how to take a store bought Kombucha and grow your own from the particulates in an unflavored, unfiltered brew. We used this video:

We used green tea because that’s what we could get at a reasonable price (from bulk barn) as a loose tea. We put it in our newly cleared out Ikea Kallax shelf-with-a-door which is now our overflow fermentation station as the miso has taken over the kitchen.

It looked very dramatic:

After a week we had something.

You want me to drink this?

It looked really solid in the 1 L jar, but when we pulled it out it fell apart a bit.

First Brew

We watch a bunch of videos on brewing, but here are the three we revisited the most:

We used green tea again for the actual brewing, just made on the stove in a pot and then strained through a colander.

The sugar got weighed into this honking big jar we bought to brew it in. We then added the hot tea to dissolve it, and poured in some cold water that we had been keeping in the fridge to get the chlorine out.

With the mixture cooled off we poured in the SCOBY and some of the liquid from growing the SCOBY. We then placed it in the cupboard for one week.

At the end of the week we pulled it out and had a good look at the SCOBY, which had some really gross looking tendrils with flecks of green tea.

The colour has really lightened and it tasted pretty dry, and a little sour. We blended up some mangos and placed them in our 1 L bottles, then topped them up with the ‘booch for a secondary ferment.

…and that brings us to today. We started another batch of ‘booch and are looking forward to tasting the mango-green tea concoction in a few day.

Sure hope this doesn’t awaken anything in us…

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