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How to make kombucha

You will need

  • large glass jar
  • sheet of paper towel or small clean cloth
  • elastic band

Ingredients

  • 1 litre filtered or cooled, boiled water
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 2-3 tea bags or 2-3 teaspoons loose tea
  • 1 SCOBY (sourced from a kombucha-making friend or buy one from a health food store or online)
  • at least 1/2 cup kombucha (from a previous batch so you can be sure it has live culture)

Instructions

1. Boil water in a pot on the stove. Add sugar and tea and stir till sugar dissolves. Let tea bags or leaves steep for about 10 minutes (or until brewed to your liking), then remove. Leave tea to cool to room temperature.

2. Pour cooled tea into your clean jar. Add kombucha and SCOBY.

3. Cover jar with a cloth or paper towel and secure with an elastic band. Leave for 4-7 days somewhere where the temperature doesn’t fluctuate. The sourness will increase over time.

4. When it’s to your taste, remove the SCOBY, with clean hands, and put it in a bowl with 1/2-1 cup of kombucha. Bottle the remaining kombucha and store it in the fridge or a cool place till you’re ready to drink it.

5. Add flavourings such as vanilla pod seeds, frozen berries or grated ginger and lemon, or just drink it as is.

What you should know about drinking kombucha

Kombucha is a health drink and not a soda. Start with 50ml a day and build up to around 250ml. Initially you might experience adverse symptoms, such as headache or diarrhoea. Just keep drinking small amounts before one meal daily. The beneficial bacteria can change your own gut bacteria within a few weeks.

Always have a glass of water after your kombucha so the acid doesn’t affect the enamel on your teeth.

Don’t start taking kombucha when you are pregnant or thinking of getting pregnant.

Kombucha is low in sugar because the sugar is used up by the SCOBY.

First published: May 2017



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