Kombucha: Makes one gallon (3 3/4 l)
Kombucha is a refreshing drink we almost always have with lunch. I make it in batches, two gallons at a time, but this recipe has the ingredients for one gallon. Kombucha is a tea that is fermented with the help of sugar and a SCOBY. (SCOBY stands for Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast). There is much written about kombucha and it’s health benefits, but I’m leaving that up to the experts to explain.
To start making kombucha you need 1-2 cups unflavored kombucha, and a scoby, which you can perhaps get from a friend, buy on-line or make yourself. (The scoby usually comes with brewed kombucha, if not buy an unflavored bottle of kombucha to put the scoby in). Kombucha can be found in most grocery stores. Once you have made your first batch you will have your own kombucha and you keep the scoby and put it in 1-2 cups (2 1/2-5 dl) of the kombucha to use for your next batch. The scoby reproduces, leaving you with scobys to share in turn with your friends.
- Boil 2 cups of filtered water in a sauce pan.
- Add 6 teabags, black or green and let them steep for 10-15 minutes. (I cut off the labels and tie the tea bags together before I put them in the water. It makes it easier to remove them later).
- Remove the tea bags and add 3/4 cups (1 3/4 dl) sugar
- Add 3 quarts (appr. 3 l) cold filtered water to a gallon jar
- Add the sweet tea to the water
- Add the scoby and 1-2 cups (2 1/2-5 dl) of the “old” kombucha
- Cover the jar with a breathable piece of cloth and tie it with a rubber band.
- Let the kombucha brew for at least one week.
The scoby doesn’t like metal or any type of flavored tea. If you want to add anything to the kombucha you do it when you bottle it.
- Remove the scoby from the kombucha and put it in a plastic, ceramic or glass bowl. Pour 1-2 cups (2 1/2-5 dl) of the brewed kombucha over the scoby and let it sit while you bottle the rest of the kombucha. I use a small funnel and a strainer.
- Now is the time to add things to the kombucha if you like. I make it natural most of the time, but sometimes I like to add organic raspberries, blueberries, ginger, lemon or pieces of apple.
- Let the bottles sit out for a couple of days before putting them in the fridge.
You can decide the taste of each batch of your kombucha by varying how many days you let it brew, the fruits you add when you bottle it and the type of unflavored tea you use.
Now, time to start a new batch.
In the pictures below you can see the scoby with the brewed kombucha in one of the bowls before it’s added to the new batch. Use a strainer when you pour the “old” kombucha into the gallon jar..