- 1 litre (35 fl oz/4 cups) filtered water or springwater
- 4 black tea bags or 1 tablespoon loose-leaf black tea
- 3 tablespoons raw or white sugar
- 3 tablespoons kombucha starter culture liquid
- kombucha mother, a little smaller than the size of your palm
What is a Kombucha?
Kombucha is a basic fermented tea wich probiotic bacterias fermentation. In kombucha brewing, the sugars convert into acids, leaving a low-sugar drink. Harvesting the kombucha when it’s still a little sweet. However, if you want to make a vinegar or a totally sugar-free product, allow it to ferment for several weeks and use the kombucha vinegar in salad dressings.
It only takes 15 minutes to prepare, but you do need to wait 1–5 weeks for fermentation. But it keeps for up to three weeks once you've got it..
1. Primary fermentation
bring 500ml (17 fl oz/2 cups) of the filtered water to a simmer. Pour into a teapot or heatproof bowl, add the tea bags or tea leaves and leave to steep for 3–5 minutes. Strain the tea into a heatproof 1.5 litre (52 fl oz/6 cup) wide-mouth glass jar and discard the tea bags or tea leaves. Add the sugar to the jar and stir to dissolve. Pour in the remaining filtered water. When the liquid has cooled to room temperature, add the kombucha starter culture liquid and Mother. Cover the jar with a piece of muslin (cheesecloth) and secure with an elastic band. Place the jar out of direct sunlight in a cool spot where it won’t be disturbed. Leave the liquid to ferment for around 4 days in hot weather and 14–20 days in cooler weather.
gently remove the Mother to re-use or rest. Retain 3 tablespoons of the kombucha liquid as the starter culture liquid for your next brew.
Mix in any sediment that has settled at the bottom of the jar, or leave it as it is. Put a funnel in the opening of a 1 litre (35 fl oz/4 cup) glass bottle with a tight-fitting lid and put a strainer on top of the funnel. Pour the kombucha into the bottle through the strainer and discard any solids.
3. Secondary fermentation
tightly seal the bottle lid and leave the bottle on the bench to build carbonation. This could take anywhere from 2–14 days, depending on the temperature. 'Burp' the kombucha daily to release some pressure by opening the lid slightly and then tightening it again.
4. Drinking and Using
when the kombucha is as fizzy and sour as you like (this could range from a small spritz to a ferocious fizz), store it in the fridge to slow the fermentation process, and enjoy cold