I started a mini-series to document my experience making Kombucha! I started off the first article explaining how Kombucha is, why its beneficial for our bodies and what you need to get started. I absolutely love Kombucha. If you ask anyone who knows me, they’ll say I’m a tad obsessed. Here’s the thing tho. I love the real, raw, fermented kombucha filled with beneficial bacteria.
I was in a local health food store recently and saw a new kombucha company with cool looking bottles on the shelves, but when I actually picked up the bottle and examined it.. it wasn’t raw kombucha. They were capitalizing off the kombu’ trend but they pasteurize their beverages and then add sugar! I was shocked and pretty upset. Again, if you know me really well there’s nothing I hate more than brands using deceiving labels. It upsets me when people eat yogurt and think they are getting probiotics….. or they drink a carton of orange juice and think they are getting vitamin C….. you’re not.
If it’s pasteurized, there’s nothing beneficial left in it. Especially when it’s then loaded with sugars and artificial sweeteners and preservatives. If I wanted to eat chemicals straight from the jar, I’d go to a science lab. Ok. My rant is over. Anyways, this is why I am so interested in making my own kombucha, because it will be the most organic and raw buch’ I can get. We’re going to take a look at the second process in brew kombu’ which is adding your fermented buch’ starter and scoby to your nute (steeped tea and cane sugar).
Nute is a fancy term for brewed tea and sugar. In this stage you need to give the scoby and bacterial something to eat and thrive on! The sugar added to this process is ALL for the scoby. By the end of your fermentation your kombucha will have little to no sugars for you to consume, only healthy bacteria and goodness for your gut!
What You Need:
- 8 Cups of Water
- 1/2 Cup Raw Cane Sugar (for the scoby)
- 4-5 Tea bags (I used orange pekoe)
- Your Scoby & Kombu’ fermentation
- Piece of Cheese Cloth (or a cutout from an old t-shirt, sheet)
- Elastic Band
- 1 Large Glass Jar (that can hold 8-9 cups of water)
Start by bringing 2-3 cups of water to a boil, but just before the water boils remove it from heat. Pour the remaining water into your large glass jar. Add your tea bags to the hot water and let steep for around 20 minutes. Stir and mix the tea bags around every 5 minutes or so. Once your tea has steeped, remove the tea bags and add the sugar; stir until everything has dissolved.
Pour your nute into the water already in your glass jar and mix together. Use your thermometer at this point to ensure the water is less that 90 degree farenheit. If it’s still too hot allow the water to cool first. (if you add the scoby to water any hotter, you will kill all the beneficial bacteria).
Once your water is at the appropriate temperature add your little jar of kombu’ and gently drop your scoby into the mix! Place your cheese cloth or piece of cloth over the opening of the jar and secure it with an elastic band. That’s it!
Now you wait for the next few days (where the scoby will either float, sink or hover in the middle) and new scoby will begin to grow at the top. Hide your new brew in a dark but warm area. Kombucha flourishes in the warmth (but not toooo warm).
Stay tuned for the next part in this series: Grow Scoby, Grow!