Kombucha can be traced back to ancient China where it was worshipped as a remedy for immortality.
According to lore, the tea was introduced to Japan by a Korean physician named Dr. Kombu who gave the bacteria-laden liquid to a Japanese emperor as a healing tonic.
Throughout the years, the “Manchurian tea” made its way into Russia, Germany, India and other parts of the world — propelled by its purported curative properties and mystical appeal.
Kombucha gets its name from the microorganisms that mingle on top and form a flat, pancake-like structure that resembles a mushroom. The gelatinous, floating pancake is known as a SCOBY (for symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast).
Recipe From Happy Herbalist
2 cups of "starter tea" from the previous kombucha tea brew. (10-25%)
5-6 t-bags or the Happy Herbalist gallon size t-bag. or 3-5 grams (one spoonful) of loose leaf tea
one cup (200-300grams) sugar. we prefer organic sugar and tea.
3 Quarts of fresh pure water. Distilled Water is Recommended
one gallon (or larger) glass container
food grade plastic may be used. These may be identified with the number 1 or 2 inside a triangle on the bottom.
clean cotton cloth, paper towel or coffee filter to fit over fermenting container and a large rubber band to secure
a warm quiet spot (it does not need to be in the dark!)
white distilled vinegar or alcohol. To clean utensils. Do not use bleach, soap or tap water which may have chlorine or chemical disinfectants. It is not recommended to clean or rinse off the kombucha mushroom But if you do so use only white distilled vinegar or alcohol. Ready to Start:
Boil Water. Do not over boil. Over boiling reduces the oxygen and carbon dioxide needed for fermenting kombucha. The purpose is to heat the water sufficiently to extract the tea and dissolve the sugar. We recommend using only good pure water. NOT tap or well water
Add Tea seep for recommended time dependent upon tea. Remove t-bags. Some people only seep their tea for a few minutes others allow it to stay over night.
Many people choose their tea based upon the medicinal value of the tea. consider natural caffeine free Rooibos Tea, Organic Green, Black or White Tea
Add Sugar no not boil longer than 5 minutes. Longer may "caramelize" the sugar.
see information of different sugars
Cool to room temperature and pour into a brewing container
Add two cups "Starter Tea" (included in our kit)
Use the liquid from your previous kombucha brew.
10 % - 25% is recommended. The older more sour K-T is recommended. Add White Distilled Vinegar (spoonful) if your starter tea is sweet and use 25-50% per volume.
Use the stuff on the bottom (brown sludge) to favor the yeast side/ use the clear portion from the top to favor the bacteria side of the SCOBY.
Add the Kombucha. Place the "mother" kombucha in the tea. Make sure that the tea is not hot ! Bring both to room temperature before adding. The kombucha will grow to fit any size container. The "mother" may float, sink or go on its side; No Problem.
The Height to Width ratio does affect the brew - with wider being better. 3 1/2 quart Pyrex salad bowl offers more oxygen ratio, better taste (IMO) but is more troublesome. Gallon Size Jars are more convenient. 5 Gallon Buckets the easiest.
tape the bowl to prevent the cloth from sinking into the tea
Not necessary when using our Gallon Size jars or Continuous Brew Containers.
Cover with cloth that is tight knit, coffee paper filters, paper towels are often used depending on the size of the container various covers are options. The purpose is to prevent pathogens from contaminating the brew.