Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Kombucha!

For those out there that follow my blog and look forward to these posts - I'm so sorry I've been out of it lately! I haven't stopped making everything from scratch at home, but I have gotten SO SO busy. Days of in-home daycare, preschool, vacations, gymnastics, and I also now cook meals for some other families in the neighborhood. Combine that with having restless children that make every minute of sleep I can get priceless, I really don't have much time for blogging. I'll do it when I can, though. 

Something I've been playing around with the past couple months is making my own Kombucha. This is fermented tea. I've read over and over the benefits of consuming fermented food, and I've noticed some of these benefits myself. Not only do they give me a burst of energy, I'm also "regular" - something that is very hard for me to normally accomplish. Some claim it heals everything that ails you, but I won't go that far. I like the taste, and I am seeing some positive benefits. Saving my life, probably not, but still worth it. 

I followed the directions for making kombucha from this site: Weed em & Reap

In Janurary, I tried growing my own SCOBY from a store-bought bottle of kambucha, and was not successful. So, on to Amazon I went :). Here is the link to where I got mine: Amazon

For my first batch, I used a black tea with orange and spice. This is my favorite kind of tea, and they say black tea is really good for the SCOBY. I did about 3/4 gallon, because this is what fit in my jar. I added 3/4 cup sugar while it was hot and let it cool completely before adding my SCOBY. Weird little fungus, that SCOBY. It's just a slimy piece of mushroom that does magical things and is apparently very sensitive to its environment. I'm always worried I'm going to kill it! Also, I have no idea how to tell if I have killed it. I used filtered water and everything to make sure it was safe. 

Then, I just let it sit covered with a towel for 10 days. After this amount of time I could taste that it was done because it tasted like the kombucha I buy at the store. The great thing about doing this at home is the cost savings. A bottle of kombucha at the store can cost 3.50-4 dollars! This is much more economical. 



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Then, I double fermented mine. I got these great glass bottles at Meijer for $2-4 each. I filled them each up 1/4 of the way with organic, not from concentrate black cherry juice. I want to find organic grape juice because I think that would be mighty tasty too!



After I let it sit, capped, for a few more days, I fished out any new "growth" at the top and put it in the fridge ready for consuming. I was delighted with the little "POP!" I got when I opened my first bottle - a good sign of fermentation!


There really is no recipe for this. I would follow the link about to Weed em and Reap and follow those instructions. What I will tell you is that this stuff if delicious and nutritious :).


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