I’m not sure when it happened. I’m not sure how. But I feel in love with a drink… KOMBUCHA!
This tart, tangy, vinegary drink has won me over. It reminds me of hard apple cider, yet less sugar, only a slight smidgen of alcohol, and lots and lots of good-for-you bacteria. Think of it as a liquid cider-like yogurt! YUM!!!
Bad news, each bottle can run you around $3-4 a pop. Its worth it, don’t get me wrong. But at the rate I was wanting to drink it, I needed to learn how to make this myself. I added it to my summer bucket list. But alas, I am an over achiever. I started two weeks early. I picked up a starter kit at Whole Foods, made by Oregon Kombucha. You can always ask around for a starter scoby from a friend who is brewing their own.
In the process of getting my starter kit, I did lots of research to learn all that I could about this magical drink. In short terms, Kombucha is fermented sweet tea. You add a mother bacteria, aka SCOBY : symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast. The scoby eats the sugar and turns the sweet tea into Kombucha. In the process of eating up the sugar, the momma scoby grows a baby scoby. And then this baby scoby can be used to make a new batch of Kombucha. And then it will have a baby scoby and so on and so forth. The cycle continues. Its sooo cool to watch this crazy think grow in your kitchen. I can only imagine that this would be wonderfully cool to do once we have kids. I wish I would have done this in my cooking class this last year.
Ok, so remember how I said earlier that I am an over achiever. Well, I have to admit some mistakes I made along the way. You know its best to learn from other people’s mistakes. So I don’t mind sharing.
So my kit came with one cup of sugar, meant to be dissolved into one gallon of hot tea. Well, I thought, why not get two birds with one stone, or rather brew two gallons with one scoby. Apparently my momma scoby wasn’t big enough to brew it fast enough and 3 weeks in my tea was still pretty sweet, although tangy. My friend Allie, also a Kombucha brewer suggested that I split up my new baby scoby into smaller batches of Kombucha, it should take less time to do less work. So tonight, I’m trying that.
I sanitized 5 ball jars. Added the mother scoby to one jar and split the baby into 4 pieces. Cover with a paper towel and jar ring and lets check it in a week. I am soooo looking forward to drinking a nice iced glass of this.
Ok, and I’m sure you are all wondering, (because I was as I looked at lots of other blogs) what the heck does the scoby feel like. To be honest, it felt like a chicken breast!
Prior to feeling the scoby myself, I ran across a very interesting article that suggested a recipe for making the left over scoby into jerky. At first, I was quite perplexed, but after feeling it…. I can kind of see how this might pass off. People eat cheese and tofu right…