What is Kombucha?
Kombucha is fermented tea, which dates back to 221 BC during the Qin Dynasty in China, although we read recently that it might have been founded in Ceylon, Sri Lanka, which is where we came across this magical elixir, either way it’s ancient!
Kombucha ingredients are simple; tea, sugar, water and a SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast)
Why is it good for you?
It contains beneficial acids (acetic, gluconic, citric, lactic, glucuronic) that are produced through the fermentation process and aid in digestion, as well as vitamins, enzymes and antioxidants from the tea with which it is brewed.
What’s a SCOBY?
The SCOBY is the mother culture, pancake pellicle layer and starter liquid, AKA Kombucha from a previous batch. The starter liquid is rich in bacteria, yeast and beneficial acids and very low in pH; the necessary components for properly acidifying your brew and kick starting the fermentation process.
Please place your organic SCOBY in the glass jar provided and cover with the material lid and rubber band as soon as possible. DO NOT REFRIGERATE YOUR SCOBY. Also make sure you kilner tap is tightened as they can be slightly loose as they are brand new.
Some Do’s and Don’ts of brewing Kombucha at home:
- Sterilise your brewing vessel and utensils before starting (you can simply use warm soapy water (never boiling) or white wine vinegar can also be used to clean it out.
- Use glass for brewing at home, fermentation grade stainless steel if scaling up
- Once brewed, keep your booch nice and warm: ideally between 21 and 27 degrees celsius (near a radiator or on heating pads ideally). Lower temperatures (21-23) mean a slower, less sour Kombucha, higher temperatures (24-27) mean a faster fermentation
- Keep your brew in a space with proper air flow
- Taste/try your brew after about 7-10 days to see how the fermentation is going
- If you're going on holiday just leave you kombucha where it is, make sure it s covered with a cloth top, the SCOBY and starter will quite happily sit here until you are back. If you're going for a long period of time you might find the brew is very acidic, again this is fine and can be used to make a new batch of kombucha
- Never store your Kombucha in direct sunlight, UV rays can damage the bacteria content and disrupt the fermentation.
- Never ferment above 30 degrees – the yeast in the Kombucha will go crazy and create funky flavours, alcohol and will become unbalanced.
- Keep your Kombucha away from smoke – cigarettes, BBQ, cooking, etc.
- Keep your brewing vessel away from flowering plants – they can cross pollinate with your brew if stored too close by and cause problems with your brew.
- Always cool down your tea before adding your starter liquid – water above 35 degrees will kill the bacteria.
Once your Kombucha is finished brewing (it tastes as you would like it to after 7 – 21 days of fermenting) it’s ready to be flavoured. You can keep it as ‘original brew’ similar to the bottle of Boo Chi you were given in your kit or you can use fresh fruit or fruit juice (we recommend making it 5% – 10% of the total liquid content), although some flavours, like ginger or turmeric, require less. You can also add any powders to your kombucha along with vegetables too! It’s
total playtime with what flavours you’d like to experiment with! The fructose (a type of natural sugar) from the fruit will convert into C02 in a closed
environment, leading to natural fizz.
You’ll need a reusable glass bottle (provided) and also (our empty Boo Chi bottles with lid are perfect for this) Fill the bottle or bottles about 3/4 of the way with your finished original Kombucha, then add the chopped up fruit or juice to the 3/4th filled bottles of original Kombucha and put the cap back on – or you can add the fruit or powder first and then top up with kombucha.
You will want to leave the bottle at room temperature for at least 2-3 days, each morning “burping” the bottle to remove pressure (opening the cap, letting out the C02 and putting the cap back on).
After 3 days you can taste the Kombucha and see if it is fizzy enough for you, the longer you leave it, the fizzier it will get until it’s just right for your taste preference.
How long does it last?
Kombucha will last indefinitely as it’s acidic enough to protect it from outside contaminants – so long as it’s kept refrigerated it can be enjoyed for as long as you like!
We find our Kombucha is best enjoyed within 5 days of opening a bottle so that it keeps its freshness and consistency but it’s entirely up to you.
How to enjoy it
Kombucha is best served cold. We enjoy ours either straight out of the bottle, poured into a glass over ice. This drink is very functional and also makes the most delicious mocktail or cocktail, here are a couple simple ingredients that work well together:
Nojito – Fresh Mint kombucha, a squeeze of fresh lime, fresh lime and mint to garnish
Boojito – As above but add 50ml of rum
Turmeric Oriental Fizz – 50ml Spiced Gin, (we can recommend Ophir) turmeric and black pepper kombucha, squeeze of lime and fresh lime to garnish
See our You Tube channel Boo Chi KombucHA for more recipes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8iHya9ARrLs
Ingredients: This will make you roughly 2 litres of kombucha
- 1 kombucha culture / S.C.O.B.Y – you can also use some of our original kombucha to start the process as well.
- 1.5 litres of filtered water.
- 4–5 tea bags (5-6 grams) organic tea bags (black, green, white or oolong).
- 130g organic granulated cane sugar
- Glass jar capable of holding 2 litres (you have been provided a 3 litre).
- Breathable cotton cloth or paper to place over jar.
- A warm airy space to let your booch brew.
- Play your kombucha music and also we recommend naming your SCOBY too!
Boil filtered water.
While you‘re waiting,drop the tea bags (or loose leaf tea) into a mixing bowl or jug.
Pour 500ml of boiled water over it. Mix the tea bags and leave for about 20 minutes.
Remove the tea bags or loose leaf tea with a clean utensil and add the sugar to your tea.
Mix until dissolved, leave for a further 10 minutes.
Top up your sweet tea mixture with extra filtered water to bring the liquid to a total of 1.5 litres.
Make sure your tea is cool, it must be below 30°C, before adding your SCOBY and starter liquid to the jar.
Cover with the cloth/rubber band and place in warm space (ideally between 23 and 27°C) for 7 – 14 days.
You can also play your kombucha music, sing to it and make sure it’s given lots of love! We notice if we play ours music in the brewery we get a much better taste from our brew.
Try it after day 7 and see how it tastes – you’re looking for a sweet/sour tang and a small amount of effervescence.
Once you have achieved you desired result your kombucha can now be bottled and placed in the fridge or flavoured (see above).
Now what do I do?
Leave ¼ starter liquid in your jar and repeat the process, remove the SCOBY baby and transfer to your SCOBY hotel with a small amount of liquid (another glass jar and cover with cloth).
Want a rest from making kombucha?
Make sure there is at least ¼ left in your jar to start the process again. The SCOBY will sit in the kombucha liquid for as long as you like.
The SCOBY hotel!
Every time you make kombucha your mother SCOBY will have a baby SCOBY (create a new pellicle layer) either on top forming a seal over the kombucha or it might be attached to the original SCOBY.
You need to remove this and add it to another glass jar with a small amount of kombucha so it’s covered and place a cloth top on it This will now become your SCOBY Hotel!
Re-use the original “mother” SCOBY for at least 5 brews and then you can remove it and give it a rest and now use the same amount of your baby SCOBY from the hotel to start a new batch!
We would love to see/hear how you get on so please feel free to find us @Boochikombucha on all social channels! Tag us in your photo and video posts #drinkbetter
Any problems please do not hesitate to contact us.
Thank you for choosing Boo Chi Kombucha we hope you love it – Happy Brewing!