Friday, October 25, 2013

Simple Family Friday

         It's Friday! And it's a Professional Development day here in our school catchment- which means both Littles are home with me this morning- so fun but it also means I am running behind this morning. When I know I am going to need to have an extra boost of energy or I'm feeling under the weather- yes still- fingers crossed I don't completely lose my voice until after tomorrow evening- I turn to one of favourite beverages- Kombucha.

       You might be wondering what is Kombucha? Kombucha is a pro biotic, naturally effervescent beverage made from black tea- it is made by fermenting the tea using a symbiotic culture of yeast and bacteria- also known as a Scoby. Kombucha is a living, enzyme-rich beverage- packed full of pro biotics, amino acids and vitamins making this an excellent beverage for boosting your immune system. It also aids in digestion and is just generally all around good stuff.

       Although Kombucha is an ancient beverage- thought to first have originated in China and brought to the counter culture of America in the 1970's- Kombucha has become extremely popular over the past few years with the advent of many packaged and store bought options becoming available. While the convenience is nice the cost is not- therefor I thought I would share just how easy it is to ferment your own Kombucha at home.

      You will need to get yourself a Scoby- I got mine from a friend- the Scoby can be easily split and shared. I have also heard rumours that you can buy a plain jar of Kombucha and start a Scoby from that- I haven't tried this myself but another friend of mine swears by it- as long as it is plain and unflavoured. Once you have your Scoby you need to add it to the black tea- the tea must be cooled to the touch- the heat will kill the Scoby. Black tea seems to work best green tea works as well. Add in a few table spoons of sugar as well- the Scoby feeds off the sugar and causes the fermentation. Cover jar with a piece of fabric and an elastic as the fermenting will draw fruit flies!

     Leave your brewing Kombucha for 3-7 days - give it a taste every few days till you like what you are tasting- the longer you leave it the more sour it will be. A second fermenting can be done by pouring off the tea- always leave a small bit in the bottom of your jar to keep the Scoby alive- so pour off the tea into another jar and add in flavours- today I am trying a healthful lemon, ginger and cayenne blend to help me kick this cold. Allow the new jar of Kombucha to ferment again for another 3 days. With the second ferment you can add in any flavour you want- fruit juices work well- berries, ginger, lemon, orange- start experimenting and see what you can come up with!

      A few last notes on home brewing Kombucha- always leave a bit of tea at the bottom of your jar with the Scoby to keep it going. Leave the tea brewing out on the counter- do not refrigerate the Scoby. The most important tip is to never use metal when brewing your Kombucha- use a wooden spoon or plastic to separate the Scoby.

      Friends as mentioned it is Friday- this has been a super long, hard week for me- it is never easy when Momma is sick! I am stubborn though so today I am heading out to Abbotsford for the Urban Market at Highstreet- I would not miss this event for anything! If you are looking for something to do tomorrow come on out to the valley and support some local businesses! Happy Friday Friends!

P.S- I have some amazing crunchy friends- a big thank you at Ally from Oolawoola for my Scoby and most of the instructions listed here- thank you to Deadra for all her encouragement and input on starting. And thank you to Karrina in Oregon for her healing health combo that I am trying today!

1 comment:

  1. YAY fermenting! YAY Kombucha! A couple things: Kombucha is the only ferment (other than some beers) who like oxygen, but not in the 2nd ferment. Your tea should be organic and never flavoured, they'll kill your SCOBY. I've used metal in my Kombucha making, but not in a metal vessel, in fact I have a stainless steel tea ball in with my water kefir now. I like to mix my teas sometimes in kommbucha, like a black and green, makes an interesting subtle flavour. AND I've made my own SCOBY from a store bought drink, make sure it's a live drink and dump it into a wider mouthed vessel, and wait a few weeks/ months. And when you start Kombucha drink only a little a day to start, it detoxes you and can leave you feeling ick if you do too much at once!
    I love fermenting! Can you tell? (although we do more water kefir, my kids go through it so fast that I need something that brews quicker, they drink at least a cup a day each!)


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