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-   -   kombucha 101 thread! (http://www.gentlechristianmothers.com/community/showthread.php?t=423094)

backtobasicsmum 09-11-2011 06:22 PM

kombucha 101 thread!
 
Please tell me all there is to know about kombucha.
I know it is good for you. :giggle Someone local was offering free scobys (scobies??).

How to you use your kombucha? How do you "care" for it? Favorite recipies? Is it dairy/wheat free?

:help

cobluegirl 09-11-2011 06:53 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
This is a great place to start.

http://users.chariot.net.au/~dna/kombucha.htm

It is fermented tea. High on probiotics. We drink it. Yes it should be wheat and dairy free.

1 gallon of black or green tea with 1.5 cups of sugar dissolved into it. 1-2 cups of Kt starter and a scoby... (or you can use a jar of raw KT from the hfs and it will grow you as scoby)

backtobasicsmum 09-11-2011 07:07 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
I'm assuming KT is kombucha tea? Do I need some of a previous batches tea AND a scoby?

cobluegirl 09-11-2011 07:09 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
:yes KT is Kombucha tea.

If you start with a bottle from the store you don't need a scoby. It will grow one and then you just use some of your Kt with the new scoby for your next batch.

backtobasicsmum 09-11-2011 07:12 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
I don't have a HFS locally, but someone is town is offering a scoby. Do I have to have some of the tea?

cobluegirl 09-11-2011 07:16 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
oh yes.. you will want to have some of their tea as a starter... 1 cup should be enough.

wisdomjourney 09-11-2011 07:18 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
:cup

houseforjoy 09-11-2011 07:25 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
yes you need a scoby and some previous tea. the person giving you the scoby should be giving you that tea as well. If it doesn't come with a small amount of tea you can use apple cider vinegar in place of it.
but generally when i make mine i do 3 quarts filtered water (NOT tap, the chlorine and other stuff in tap water will kill the scoby) 4 black tea bags, and 1 cup sugar. if you search on GCM there are a few threads out there. you need to use a wide mouth container. some people put it in a bowl (oh and do not use PLASTIC, the kombucha scoby tries to clean whatever container it is in, so if you put it in plastic it will suck some of the plastic chemicals out, use only glass containers-no metal)

http://www.amazon.com/Jarden-Waterme...793934&sr=8-15

I use something similar to that only without the spout on the bottom. i can get the jars for only 3 bucks though.

then you boil the water and add in the tea bags (i usually put the tea bags in a large thermos and add 1 qt boiling water and let it sit covered with a towel for 20 minutes) then add the other 2 qts water to the glass jar, the tea and the sugar. stir till sugar is dissolved. then pour in the previous batch tea (about 1/2 cup i think ) and then carefully lay the kombucha scoby on top (the water should just be warm, if it is hot let it cool covered with a towel) then cover the jar with a white tea towel or old white t-shirt material. let it sit for 7 days, in a warmish place where it won't get bumped. then after 7 days take your scoby out and a small amount of tea and either repeat the process or store it in a pint jar-- if storing the scoby should be covered in tea and placed in the fridge till ready to use, but try not to let it be in there for more then 2 weeks.

well there's a lot of info:shifty

backtobasicsmum 09-12-2011 02:51 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
:nak

Thanks for all that. :yes

Does it matter what kind of tea I use? Do you gals have any favorites?

And...what is it supposed to look/smell like when done?

cobluegirl 09-12-2011 04:54 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
You will need to have some black tea...you can mix it with fruit teas but not Zingers....

We like Black Cherry.

backtobasicsmum 09-12-2011 05:41 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
I really, really prefer white teas....can I try those?

cobluegirl 09-12-2011 05:47 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
Did you read Domm's site? I am not sure. I would think so but I seem to recall that it needs something that is in the black teas... :think

zak 09-12-2011 06:08 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
:popcorn Coming back to this. I just started my first batch this week and I hit day 5 tomorrow. :) We are going to put it in quart jars and flavor them with frozen fruits (raspberry, blueberry and strawberry).

MIL gave me my scoby and tea to start. :rockon :)

Seems pretty easy. I was worried about making a lot of work for myself. :lol

backtobasicsmum 09-12-2011 07:14 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
That sounds good, Zak, adding fruit! Let us know how it goes. :yes

cobluegirl 09-12-2011 07:16 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
i did it once with Strawberry.... LOL

zak 09-12-2011 07:18 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
Her strawberry was sooooo good. DS1 is dying for ours to be ready. He really needs to be drinking it. :yes Lots of bowel issues lately. :( Not sure what's up with his belly.

Rach, how do I know if it's ok at 5 days or I need to wait to 7?? Can I tell by looking??

cobluegirl 09-12-2011 07:26 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
just taste it. usually I like a longer brew..but how fast it brews depends upon the temps of your house.

zak 09-12-2011 07:34 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
I'm scared to taste it without fruit. :bag :lol

Soliloquy 09-12-2011 07:44 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
LisaM's no fail KT.

BLACK tea. Nothing else
1 cup WHITE sugar (it's the only time I ever use it)
filtered water
SCOBY
1/2 c KT (or more, 1/2 c is minimum )
wide-mouth gallon jar
Clean dish towel, 100% cotton
Large rubber band

Boil about 4 c water. Stir in 1 c sugar and 2 heaping tablespoons black tea. (I think that's the equivalent of 6 bags but I'm not positive, I buy loose tea.) Cool to room temp. Strain out tea as you pour it into the gallon jar. Put in the SCOBY. Add enough filtered water to bring it to within 2 inches (or so) of the top. Cover with dish towel, secure with rubber band. Put in cabinet for two weeks. A new SCOBY will grow on top. Taste a bit after two weeks. If it's too sweet, let it go another week.

Scoop out the SCOBY. Pour out all but 1/2 c into your bottles. Repeat the recipe for a new batch.

To flavor it, pour finished it into glass bottles. Add a a few spoonfuls of fruit purée. Strawberry is excellent. Let it sit, tightly capped, for awhile, a week or two. It will become carbonated.

Drink chilled.

It is normal to have brown stringy things and sediment. Those are spent yeast cells and are very rich in b vitamins. You can strain it if it icks you out, though.

You do not need to wash your brewing jar if you make your next batch right away. I haven't washed my brewing jars in years. This is called "continuous culture" and strengths your SCOBY.

---------- Post added at 09:41 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:35 PM ----------

You should never, ever see black spots or anything fuzzy. Brown spots are normal. Green and white tea do not have enough tannins to support the SCOBY. You can use 25% or less of other teas but black tea gives the best results and ensures that most of the sugar will be consumed.

---------- Post added at 09:43 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:41 PM ----------

Quote:

Originally Posted by zak (Post 4156663)
I'm scared to taste it without fruit. :bag :lol

It tastes like hard cider. It's good even without fruit. My kids chug it down. I have to hide it if I want any!

---------- Post added at 09:44 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:43 PM ----------

Quote:

Originally Posted by zak (Post 4156621)
Her strawberry was sooooo good. DS1 is dying for ours to be ready. He really needs to be drinking it. :yes Lots of bowel issues lately. :( Not sure what's up with his belly.

Rach, how do I know if it's ok at 5 days or I need to wait to 7?? Can I tell by looking??

At 7 days it will still be quite sweet and have sugar in it. You can put a straw into it, put your finger on top of the straw to get some liquid out, then taste it. 14-21 days is how we like it.

backtobasicsmum 09-12-2011 07:50 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
That is really helpful Lisa!

[QUOTE]To flavor it, pour finished it into glass bottles. Add a a few spoonfuls of fruit purée. Strawberry is excellent. Let it sit, tightly capped, for awhile, a week or two. It will become carbonated. [QUOTE]

At this point is it in your fridge or still on the counter?

And how do you store a scoby when you don't have a batch going?

Soliloquy 09-13-2011 07:59 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
[QUOTE=backtobasicsmum;4156710]That is really helpful Lisa!

[QUOTE]To flavor it, pour finished it into glass bottles. Add a a few spoonfuls of fruit purée. Strawberry is excellent. Let it sit, tightly capped, for awhile, a week or two. It will become carbonated.
Quote:


At this point is it in your fridge or still on the counter?

And how do you store a scoby when you don't have a batch going?
At room temp.

To store or rest a SCOBY put it in a glass jar and cover it with kt. Store in fridge. They keep at least 6 months. It's a good idea to keep a spare in the fridge although I don't anymore. You can start a new batch with just part of a SCOBY, too. You can tear them apart.

cobluegirl 09-13-2011 08:51 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
I have stored mine in the dark pantry in a jar with a lid and a little tea and it keeps pretty well.

Soliloquy 09-13-2011 03:26 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by cobluegirl (Post 4157623)
I have stored mine in the dark pantry in a jar with a lid and a little tea and it keeps pretty well.

Yes, some people keep it at room.temp. I think you have to feed it every now and then if you do that, but it still should keep at least 2 months, I would think. I've neglected mine for over 6 weeks and they were fine.

Btw, kombucha that ferments too long and is too sour to drink is a FANTASTIC marinade. And you can marinade at room temp because nothing harmful will grow in it.

cobluegirl 09-13-2011 03:40 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
ooh good to know! my scoby is like 5" thick....

backtobasicsmum 09-21-2011 09:03 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread!
 
Okay, I got a scoby. It is this big gross looking thing. :bag The lady also sent a sample of kombucha she made with grape juice. It smells....weird to me...kind of like wine? But it didn't taste too weird.

So, tomorrow I am going to start my first batch, following Lisa's info.

Zak, how is yours going?

zak 09-22-2011 05:09 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *tiny update and question post 25*
 
Great!! I just jarred up batch two. The boys really like it! It is pretty "wine-y" to me too. :yes

Soliloquy 09-22-2011 06:18 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *tiny update and question post 25*
 
:lol kombucha SCOBYs look like alien spawn. :lol. It tastes like a cross between hard cider and a wine cooler to me. I drank tons of it while pg because I crave wine when I'm pg.

Btw, Lipton tea is pesticide free even if it's not organic.

backtobasicsmum 09-22-2011 08:45 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *tiny update and question post 25*
 
:bag So is it alcoholic?

cobluegirl 09-22-2011 08:49 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *tiny update and question post 25*
 
there is like .5% alcohol in it... perfectly safe... even for kids.

backtobasicsmum 09-22-2011 09:47 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *tiny update and question post 25*
 
Thanks. I'm kind of wimpy about things like that. :giggle

---------- Post added at 10:47 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:35 AM ----------

Another question :giggle
Is there any pro/con to having a very large scoby? Should I make it smaller so it doesn't take up so much room in my brewing jar?

Soliloquy 09-22-2011 09:57 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *tiny update and question post 25*
 
It doesn't matter. A really small one might take longer but it doesn't matter either way.

backtobasicsmum 09-28-2011 09:23 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *tiny update and question post 25*
 
Okay, I'm ready to bottle my tea to make it fizzy. I keep reading that putting it into glass bottles can make it explode. I had been planning on using canning jars with lids...what do you guys use? If I only leave it for, say 3 days, is there any chance of it exploding?

cobluegirl 09-28-2011 09:33 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *tiny update and question post 25*
 
I have never had one explode. I did have a cork fly off before though.

houseforjoy 09-28-2011 09:34 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *another question #32*
 
i have never had mine explode. :shrug3 i do make sure to leave some head room and i don't screw the lid on super tight either.

backtobasicsmum 09-28-2011 11:23 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *another question #32*
 
I'm getting excited about this! I got it all bottled up in glass canning jars with fruit (1 with peach puree, 1 with strawberry puree and 2 with blueberry puree). I didn't think to taste it, until I had it all mostly poured into the jars with fruit...it was really good. :giggle:yes Tasted like apple cider. I'm so excited to taste the fruity versions soon. I got another batch brewing right away and next time I'll try some fizzy without fruit. I'm aleady thinking I'm going to need a second glass gallon jar. :shifty

zak 09-28-2011 11:39 AM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *another question #32*
 
Rock on. I've got mine in glass canning jars (quart size) and no issues so far. That's how MIL has been doing it for a year or two with no issues as well.

I need another gallon jar too. :shifty

Off to have some raspberry!!! :yum

JustMandy 09-28-2011 12:00 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *another question #32*
 
I really want to do this! Where can a girl get a scoby?

backtobasicsmum 09-28-2011 12:02 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *another question #32*
 
Anyone that makes kombucha gets "baby" scobys, so you just need to find someone local that makes it. I'm sure you could have someone mail it to you as well, if necessary. I randomly found my scoby on my local facebook garage sale site...but we live in a town of 1000 so I knew by second hand the gal who had a scoby and felt safe getting one from her.

Soliloquy 09-28-2011 02:20 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *another question #32*
 
It can explode. Will it? Highly unlikely. Highly. I usually do my 2nd ferment for at least 7 days and I've never had an explosion. Just fyi you may not get fizz in only 3 days but it will still taste good

Mandy, I mail SCOBYs but I am notoriously slow about it. :O

JustMandy 09-28-2011 02:29 PM

Re: kombucha 101 thread! *another question #32*
 
What about this?

http://www.foodrenegade.com/how-to-g...ombucha-scoby/


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