Kombucha – the Summer Drink You Can Brew Yourself

Kombucha – the Summer Drink You Can Brew Yourself

Cool, sparkling and refreshing in taste

With kombucha everything depends on the SCOBY, the complex symbiosis of acetic acid bacteria and yeasts. It transforms your favorite tea into the unmistakable Kombucha and the added sugar into sparkling freshness. Your kitchen is the laboratory in which you can make the sour summer drink, which is reminiscent of cider and fresh must, with little effort. We’ll tell you how to do this here.

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The origin of Kombucha

The real age of the kombucha lies in the dark of history. We know, however, that it has been drunk in Asia for thousands of years and that it probably originally came from northeast China. From Asia, it finally got to Russia, where German prisoners of war brought it home with them after the First World War. At least that is how far the scientific studies from 1930, published by Deutsches Apotheker Verlag, go. The kombucha probably got its current name in Japan, where the brown alga known as “kombu” was processed into tea (Japanese cha ”) very early on.

The explosion began in Europe and the US in the 1990s when probiotic foods became fashionable. Anything that was good for the microorganisms in the intestine was selling well. The SCOBY, the symbiotic culture of yeasts and acetic acid bacteria, was passed on from neighbor to neighbor.

The SCOBY

The most important thing about the Kombucha is the SCOBY, the mother mushroom for making it. SCOBY is an acronym for “symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast”. The name suggests that it is a symbiosis of unicellular yeasts and acetic acid bacteria.

You can get the SCOBY as a white or rose-colored, jelly-like mass in the health food store or ask a friend if he’ll share his SCOBY with you. Don’t worry, the SCOBY will grow back undamaged during fermentation. It is important that the SCOBY is kept in sufficient liquid. The batch liquid should make up at least 10 percent of the liquid in your first own production. In addition, the mother’s mushroom should be large enough to cover the entire surface of your kombucha jar.

Tangy and sweet to refreshingly tart

Tea and sugar are the main ingredients that the SCOBY transforms into delicious kombucha over time. It converts the added sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide, the components of the tea into aromas and flavors.

It is up to you how long you let your ingredients ferment and how much alcohol they produce. Usually, the alcohol content later ranks 0.5 to 3 percent. The mother mushroom also messes with the caffeine in tea. The finished kombucha only contains around a third of the caffeine from the beginning. The acetic acid bacteria ensure the fresh, slightly sour taste. Together with the residual sugar, they create the typical sweet and sour, slightly sparkling taste reminiscent of Federweisser and cider.

Why bought kombucha tastes different

To ensure that industrially produced kombucha does not turn into vinegar on the supermarket shelf, industrial companies have to pasteurize the drink. All healthy cultures are killed and their positive properties are lost.

In addition, commercially available kombuchas often contain large amounts of sugar, syrup or artificial flavors to ensure a uniform taste.

Making this drink yourself may take a little more effort than reaching the supermarket shelf. But you will quickly notice how much fun it is to experiment with different types of tea. You also have many options for influencing the degree of sweetness, acidity and alcohol content.

How to make kombucha at home

For two liters of kombucha you need:

  • 2 liters of water
  • 2 – 4 teaspoons of tea of ​​your choice, preferably black or green tea
  • 180 g sugar (cane sugar is also good)
  • 1 SCOBY (mother mushroom)
  • 200 – 400 ml preparation liquid (finished kombucha)

Moreover:

  • 1 wide mason jar (approx. 2.5 – 3 liters capacity)
  • Cooking pot
  • Tea strainer
  • Funnel
  • Sieve
  • Spoon
  • 1 fresh towel
  • Bottles or portion glasses for filling

Kombucha preparation:

The tea preparation

  1. Carefully boil all utensils so that they are sterile.
  2. Boil the water, add the tea and stir well.
  3. Let the tea steep for 10-15 minutes, then remove the tea strainer.
  4. Add the sugar and dissolve it completely.
  5. Let everything cool down to room temperature.
  6. Pour the tea into the wide mason jar, but leave space for the SCOBY and the preparation liquid.

Add the scoby

  1. Wash your hands under running water.
  2. Now add the SCOBY and the preparation liquid.
  3. Gently push the SCOBY down until it is completely covered.
  4. Cover the jar with the towel.

Ferment the kombucha

Coffee - 46989 x
Coffee - 46989

  1. Let the kombucha ferment in a dark, warm place for 7-10 days.
  2. Take out the SCOBY with clean hands, rinse it under cold running water and place it in a bowl.
  3. Fill the finished kombucha through a sieve and a funnel into bottles or portion glasses, but keep 200 – 400 ml of kombucha as a make-up liquid for the next production.
  4. Start the next production or store the SCOBY with the preparation liquid in a glass vessel.
  5. Leave the filled bottles of Kombucha for 1 – 3 days for a second fermentation in a warm, dark place.
  6. Then cool the bottles in the fridge and enjoy your home-brewed kombucha. Well got it.

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Conclusion

  • The refreshingly tangy, sweet and sour taste of the Kombucha is reminiscent of cider or Federweißer.
  • You need a SCOBY (mother mushroom) to make it.
  • Hygiene in manufacturing is important.
  • The taste varies depending on the tea used – experimentation is expressly encouraged.