Kombucha Time, Again

It’s no secret I like to make my own stuff – clothes, granola, people, you name it.

I’ve made kombucha before, as well, but fell off the wagon when I turned my tiny attention span in other directions. But now, as old age places its sticky fingers on my horizon, bringing with it uncool older people problems like an occasionally sluggish gut, moodier swings and real hangovers, I need to get back to the good stuff. I need to take a bit of extra care so my farts can fart instead of getting caught up on polyps or something, or even worse, I have to stop eating more foods that I love but that don’t love me back, like onions, garlic, potato and broccoli.

Anyhoo, back to the Kombucha. You can find loads of good recipes online but I’m keeping it clean this time, whereas before I did secondary fermentations – totes delish but time-consumimg in a way I can’t support.

Black tea – about a quart or two, a cup or two of sugar. Let it cool all the way down, probs overnight. Pour the remains of a store-bought kombucha with the mothery gunk floating in it, or try craigslist and risk getting a jar of someone’s boogers. Cover it up because bugs love that shit.

Leave it in a warmish place but out of direct light for a few weeks, then enjoy that vinegary soda all you like.
Secondary fermentations involve pouring the kombucha tea into another jar or bottle etc and adding cut up fruit – the best I made was with asian pear or fig, can’t remember which. It was the right combo of fruity sweet flavour and soda-y bubbles. Except it got a bit shook up and basically exploded on me when I chanced opening it. I have also juiced fruits and veges and added it to the kombucha tea, very nice.

Always keep your kombucha mother in her own jar, don’t add anything except the room temp black tea and dissolved sugar. The mother is always separate from whatever you may add to the drinking tea.

When you’ve drained off the kombucha for drinking, make more black tea and add it so the old girl doesn’t shrivel up and die, though from what I’ve seen of the Beverley Hillbillies, she’ll be tough as nails and twice as strong.

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Kombucha Adventures

My house is cold but has lot’s of windows which doesn’t seem right for Kombucha-growing on the bench. So, mine is on a shadowy shelf in the pantry. The temp seems ok but out of sight is out of mind, so it has been brewing for a lot longer than necessary, I think.
I finally had some down time and was able to clean some bottles and find a funnel – because you know the boys have all 5 of them somewhere in their little kitchen – and pour out 2 bottles.
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It was a nice colour, if a little dark, and fizzy enough, though apparently it will get more fizzy after bottling. Now for the taste test.

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Smells about right

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Tastes about right, I reckon

But what to flavour it with? I will be sure to use apple and ginger when the apples come in, but right now what I have in abundance is weeds, so I picked a bag of dandelion greens, and washed and juiced those fuckers. But the weeds had the last laugh because they are bitter as hell.
I added juiced then blended blueberries to it, then dumped them in the kombucha bottles.
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Delicious! Next time I will try something else with the dandelions, then I will try to feed it to Husband, that skeptic.

Scoby Doby Doo

I will admit to being sceptical of kombucha and kombucha brewers previously. I don’t know what changed my mind, but one day I decided to try some at a cafe, and it wasn’t all bad. The next time I saw a bottle at the shops, I bought one home, and thought it was actually rather delicious. I bought another bottle, and then a two-for-one deal, and then thought about doing it myself. Husband was not impressed, but I knew I would win him over, just like I did for ditching shampoo. So the next time I bought a bottle, I saved part of it and put it in a jar with some sweetened tea, and covered it, and waited. And waited. And waited. Then I moved it to the pantry for better air flow, even though the temperature is probably lower in there. The high cupboard above the oven where it was before, still smells a little extra vinegar-y.
Then I kept waiting, then peeking under the cheesecloth, and worrying about the gnarly white plops on top of the big plop, and then I worried less because the big plop became the mother and got thicker. I’ve been wondering for a week or so, when to add more tea, and decided to do it today, so she can drink it up over the next few weeks. Maybe I can have my first drink during spring break. I could mix it up with dandelion greens from the lawn, and Husband would really roll his eyes.
But how to transfer the scoby?

I got a sweet haircut today

I got a sweet haircut today

Would it be damaged from being poured into a new jar? I searched online and found a video of a woman picking the bloody thing out of the jar – ewww – and putting in the new jar. I don’t think so. I did eventually just gently pour it into the bigger jar with the tea and more of the bottled stuff,  just to be on the safe side.
Nasty

Nasty

I bought a bottle but the flavour was awful, but I didn’t want to waste it, so I’m assuming the mother will eat that shit up, too.
She's in there. It's like a spa bath, for scobies.

She’s in there. It’s like a spa bath, for scobies.

So now the cheesecloth is back on and back into the pantry it went. Hopefully I will remember to check out the scobyaroo when we come back from our little vacation, and the juicy juice might be fizzy and ready for flavouring. But not with cranberry.