Kombucha jar

The fermented drink called Kombucha is made by using a ‘SCOBY’ to ferment a sweet black tea.

During the fermentation process, the SCOBY uses the sugar to ferment. There is plenty of information around about the benefits of Kombucha, you just have to do a quick search of it. So I will give you the recipe that I use to make it.

Always reserve about 2 cups from your last batch to make a new batch to help it ferment.

Then heat up 2L of water with 1/2 cup of sugar (or equivalent of this to fill your vessel i.e. my vessel is 8L, so I use 8L of water 2 cups of sugar). I use organic raw sugar now, but have used Rapadura sugar as well. I found the Raw Sugar fermented quicker than the rapadura, but it is dependant on the temperature at the time as well.

Once the sugar is dissolved, then place your teabags/loose tea in the infuse. Again I use 4 teabags for each of those 2L. I leave the teabags in until it has cooled to room temperature, but you can take them out earlier if you like. Once cooled to room temperature, add it into your last batch with your scoby and cover over with a tight-weave cloth to stop bugs and other nasties getting in.

Leave to ferment, for at least 5 days, then test. It is very dependant on the weather, so start testing here, but it ferments faster in heat and slower in cool. Average is 7-10 days, but your first batch or 2 could take longer than this, especially if the vessel is considerably large.

Once it is to your taste (it should have a tang to it, if it is still quite sweet, it isn’t fermented enough) then bottle it in a glass bottle (the ones with the flip top lids are great) and place into the fridge for drinking.

You can also do a ‘second ferment’. This is where you add something into it and let it sit for a few more days then drink it. Fresh ginger root added is my favourite, but you can use fruits, other teas, turmeric, vanilla beans, try a few things out!

It is always good when introducing any fermented/cultured food to start off slowly and gradually work up. For some, 1 cup could be fine and for others it could be 20ml depending on your gut function and what else is going on.

So give it a go and try something new!