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Infusing Kombucha

July 9, 2015

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As of late, I’ve become kombucha-brewing junkie.  I’d tried brewing it last year, but it never stuck because I wasn’t that in love with the taste.  But then my friend let me try some of her blueberry-infused brew a few months ago, I went home with a scuby, and have been an avid fermented-mushroom-drinker since.

About Kombucha

Kombucha is a fermented tea made with sugar, black tea, a kombucha starter culture, and some left-over tea from a previous batch.  It’s usually fermented for 5-14 days, and ends up tasting like sweet, mild vinegar (more vinegary with time).  This is a great site to find out all you need to know about making your own kombucha.  Here’s a really great PDF with directions for brewing your own.

The list of benefits you get from drinking kombucha is unbelievably long. It’s a detoxifier (so drink lots of water too), aids in digestion and gut health, boosts your immune system, and helps prevent arthritis and migraines among [soo] many other things.

Flavoring Kombucha

After the fermentation process, remove the culture and set it aside with about a cup of the pure, untainted batch.  I usually start brewing my new batch of tea while I’m working on flavoring the most recent batch.  Most people flavor their kombucha with juice, but I prefer chopping up fresh fruit and ginger. The carbonation-producing yeasts thrive in oxygen-free environment, so when you add fruit and tighten the container cap, the carbonation increases.

1. Pour the freshly fermented kombucha into your clean individual glass kombucha bottles until they’re about 80% full.

2. Fill the rest of the bottle with either fruit juice or freshly chopped fruit.  Frozen fruit also works.  Be sure to leave about a quarter-inch of headspace.

It’s commonly suggested to let the flavor-infused kombucha to sit and ferment for another 48 hours, but I prefer to just stick them all in the fridge right away.  After only a day in the fridge the kombucha pulls out the flavors in the fruit, yet the fruit remains delicious as well.  I usually drink my infused kombucha within two weeks, although it starts getting a little more sour after about a week.

What to flavor with:

  • Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries
  • Frozen fruit
  • Fruit juice
  • Dried fruit : use half of what you would fresh
  • Organic flavor extracts (vanila, almond, lemon, etc): use 1/8 tsp for each cup
  • Ginger & honey: either make a mixture with some of the fresh kombucha, grated ginger, and honey; or plop a few chunks of ginger in each container with a drop of honey.