Kombucha Tea, Your new Probiotic Health Drink

I visited the Farm Fest last winters and amongst all the organic food been served across the fest, What caught my eye was this large earthen pot of A drink been served. I was a curious visitor asked for a glass of it. I found it a bit fermented acidic as a drink, but very close to the flavours of an apple juice kid of something. Confused I asked the owner about the drink, and the only information I collected was that it was a healthy drink called KOMBUCHA. I somehow remembered the name.

I again happened to come across this drink At another organic fest, which made me even more curious. I did my bit of reading about it, but The question was getting the SCOBY to get started.

How I got My SCOBY

Did my workshop on Kombucha brewing with Kapil At the farm (where I first tasted it),  who had been brewing the Kombucha for more than a year now, and got my first SCOBY. You can take it from a friend who already does the Kombucha brewing.

To my surprise, while interacting with a friend Elizabeth , I found she is a big fan Of Kombucha and it is readily available across various stores in the states. Kombucha has also become a big in thing now with it on the menu of some Organic Concept Restaurants and cafes.

Did My first Kombucha brewing A while ago, and now its a regular thing at home, with all possible experiments that we do with herbs and fruits in it. Its a showstopper at parties too. Though My friends find it very unique and unheard but it is catching up a lot of conversations and inquisitiveness around.

Is it An alcoholic Beverage 

Kombucha is a functional Beverage or a Fermented form of tea, Which is slightly effervescent and alcoholic, Its a fermented and sweetened black or green tea Drink and intended to be consumed in moderation for its health benefits. This is also Referred to as Kombucha Tea to identify it as a health drink instead of been mistaken as an alcoholic beverage. The concentration of alcohol is less than 1 percent due to fermentation. It will cause alcoholic action only if consumed in liters.

Its also confused with the Japanese drink Konbu-Cha ( made with the dried weed Kelp).

Origin of Kombucha also looks like from one of the East Asian countries with no clear hint anywhere in texts.

Kombucha is produced by Fermenting Tea with a Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast. This is referred to as SCOBY ( Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast).

Kombucha Tea has many Health benefits to its credit, which may not be proven by any scientific Researches yet, but has scientific reasoning to it..

During the fermentation process of Kombucha brewing, the yeast in the SCOBY breaks down the sugar present in the tea and releases  Probiotic Bacteria.

Gut Health

Probiotic Bacteria are similar to the healthy bacteria found in the gut, hence helping to maintain a healthy gut, improved digestion.

Improved Immunity is a result of good gut health.

Improved Gut health and Immunity results in improved  Liver Health, and which in turn is beneficial in managing Type 2 Diabetes. These subjects are considered based on a interrelation of the system functioning and might need more research before we start looking at Kombucha as an Alternate medicine. But right now Kombucha is more like an alternative to fizzy unhealthy drinks in the market and a step towards a healthy lifestyle.

Kombucha is safe for KIds  due to its probiotic nature and negligible ( less than 0.5 percent ) Alcohol content it is safe for consumption in Kids in moderate quantities.( not to be consumed by infants)

How to Brew A KOMBUCHA

Main Components

Tea brew

Sugar or jaggery

SCOBY

Kombucha making starts with Brewing good quality tea leaves. The main Component in tea Leaves i.e. Catechins are required for the Drink to be made. Various variety of Green Tea, Balck Tea or the Oolong tea can be used for this purpose. However The herbal teas should be avoided as there might be composition alteration in the same, which can affect the process of Kombucha making, and I am afraid it might not be called a Kombucha.

Kombucha Making Is  divided into Two Stages

Stage I

Brewing a tea and sugar mixture, Introducing a SCOBY  And Keeping it to Ferment.

SCOBY formed after stage 1

Stage II

Carbonation  and Refrigeration

Equipments and Tools

A Two Liter Glass Jar,

Kitchen towel/ Cotton woven cloth and string

Filter cloth or cheesecloth, Sieve, Funnel

2 One liter Glass bottles with airtight lids.

Print Recipe
Kombucha Tea
Kombucha is a fermented Tea with Probiotic properties, good for gut health.
Course Drinks
Prep Time 15 Minutes
Cook Time 10 Minutes
Passive Time 14 Days
Servings
Litres
Ingredients
Course Drinks
Prep Time 15 Minutes
Cook Time 10 Minutes
Passive Time 14 Days
Servings
Litres
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Make the tea Base, By boiling water. Add sugar, and stir to dissolve . Dip the tea bags or leaves and allow to steep. Allow to cool it completely.
  2. Add the starter tea to the tea only after ithas cooled. This gives acodity to the mixture and avoids growth of bad bacteria.
  3. Now transfer it to a clean glass jar and introduce a SCOBY( with clean hands to avoid contamination). Cover the jar with layers of clean kItchen towel/ woven cloth, and tie it tighlty to secure the cover.
  4. Allow to stand undisturbed in a corner of kitchen shelf for 7-10 days till new fresh layer of cream coloured SCOBY forms on the top of the liquid( which is visible from outside) The Scoby introduced can be floating or stuck to the new one, which is normal and the brown stringy growths are also normal. Do check out fo any fungal contamination in form of Blue/ black growth (In that case discard the whole liquid and the SCOBY and start afresh)
  5. You can allow to let it stand beyond 7-10 days in case extra tartness is desired in the drink.
  6. Once ready with a SCOBY and to the tartness required, With clean hands, remove the SCOBy and store it in a tea mixture in a clean jar to use for further brewing. .
  7. Strain the Fermented tea. Store it in clean glass Bottles and close the lid. This is Carbonation stage. Allow it to stand for 3-5 days.
  8. At this stage before you keep it for refrigeration, you can add fresh herbs or fruits for enhanced flavours.
  9. After 3-5 Days , Starin the liquid and Allow to chill.
  10. Starin and serve.
Recipe Notes

One can Use any brand or variety of tea with tea leaves as a main ingredient for the process. It can be Green tea, Black Tea or Oolong Tea.

U can choose to use lesser quantities of Sugar/ Jaggery, but No sugar would not let the process to initiate as Sugar provides the food to the culture to grow.

Unrefined sugar

The process of fermentation processes the Sugar, making it more acceptable for the body, and it is easily metabolised in the body, hence making it safe for Diabetes, if consumed in checked quantities.

A small piece of SCOBY is enough to initiate the process, along with the starter tea from previous batch of brew or store bought Kombucha.

For the starter tea, one must use a pure unflavoured form of brewed Kombucha.

Starter Components

The number of days required for stage 1 and stage 2 depends on the weather and can be less in extreme summers and more in extreme winter months.

Always add the desired flavours either at the stage of bottling for carbonation or before refrigeration.

DO NOT add fresh herbs at stage one.

 

 

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