When Jill asked me last week to give you some details on how to make your own Kombucha (and why), I was there because I'm pretty excited about this amazing fermented drink. Why should not I do that? It's a delicious way to improve gut health, and doing it yourself saves a lot of money!
But what I like most about making my own kombucha? I can customize it and spice Kombucha, which I make at home, just to my family's taste. I can change my taste, depending on what I'm looking for, which fruits are on the market, what's growing in my garden, or what friends are coming to dinner this week. (Yes, my friends have taste requirements.)
I mean Who would like to drink a cookie cutter when they experience new excitement every time they open a bottle? I'm not a cookie cutter in any part of my life, but especially not in the kitchen. So I'm here today to help you brew an amazing fizzy Kombucha that's totally original and made to your taste she I like!
What is the difference between the first and the second fermentation?
When I started to prepare this wonderful carbonated beverage at home, I was puzzled by the idea of first and second fermentation. I did not understand the difference. But it turns out that it's super easy.
- The first fermentation Gives you a fermented tea. This is the part where all these wonderful health benefits (some I explain here) build.
- The second fermentation adds flavor and carbonation. This step is optional. But honestly, it's never optional these house because it is our favorite concern in the production of kombucha to develop new flavors and to recreate our favorite dishes.
How do you know when the first fermentation is complete?
After you have gone through the stages for the first fermentation (described here), in my opinion, the only really difficult thing about kombucha – the wait.
I wish I could give you a precise formula for how long you wait, but that does not work. There are so many variables that affect the speed of the fermentation that the best thing I can tell you is to take a sip of it daily around the 2nd or 3rd day when it's warm in your home , Or give it 4 or 5 days if it is cooler in your kitchen, as the fermentation process is slowed down at lower temperatures.
If your home is cool, either because it's winter or when the air conditioning is on, it may take a week or two for your first fermentation to reach the right taste.
For optimal fermentation, try to keep your Kombucha close 70 ° F. This handy Aufklebethermometer Work very well if you want to monitor your kombucha temperature.
If you like it – if it's not too sweet but does not taste like vinegar – the first fermentation is done. As already mentioned, you can drink and enjoy your kombucha immediately. Or, if your patience can wait another time, you can continue with the really entertaining Kombucha flavor.
How to spice Kombucha?
To spice Kombucha is super easy. Or it can be as complicated as you want it to be.
Set up your second fermentation
When your first Kombucha fermentation is done to your taste, slide your Scoby into a bowl (or I just slide it into a clean 1/2-gallon jar that will serve as the fermentor for my next batch). Stir well the liquid. If it is well fermented, the lactic acid will bubble while stirring. Do not worry, if it is not carbonated, it will produce more carbonation in the next fermentation.
After stirring, pour 1 cup of fermented tea into the scoby to reserve for your next batch.
Use a funnel to fill the remaining quantities into tightly sealable bottles for a second fermentation. I recommend flip-top bottles because they can build up your carbonation easily and quickly. If you are using a 1/2-gallon mason jar to make your first fermentation (see instructions for making the first fermentation here) you will need it one 33 ounces Flip-top bottle and a 16-ounce flip-top bottle for your second fermentation or 3 of the 16 ounce bottles,
Choose your taste
There are many ways to spice up your Kombucha, from fruit juice to frozen fruit to flavored teas. I share recipes for the favorite dishes of my family hereOne like Maple Apple Pie and Blueberry Ginger.
As an inspiration, consider any combination of any wonderful flavor option in this list. But I assure you that hardly scrape the surface of possibilities:
Fruits for seasoning kombucha
Herbs for seasoning Kombucha
Other ingredients for seasoning Kombucha
- Ginger (ginger not only gives a wonderful taste, but also speeds up the carbonation in the second fermentation)
- Maple syrup (This maple syrup is my favorite.)
- Pear enriched maple syrup
- Cider (here my recipe for maple apple wine.)
- Flower syrup like You can make purple syrup yourself
- Flavored loose leaf Tees like thesethat Ceanne manufactures at Farmhouse Teas specifically for seasoning kombucha.
If you create an invention that you love, please leave a comment and let us know! Jill and I are both always on the lookout for our next favorite Kombucha flavor!
How do you know when your second fermentation has ended?
Honestly you are the only judge who decides "done". If you like it "ready", that's all that's important for a perfect DIY drink, right? In general, I try to let it last at least a few days, until the aromas have risen and the carbonic acid has accumulated. On the other hand, you can let them sit as long as you like before you drink. You just have to know that over time the taste becomes more vinegar and less sweet.
When you're ready to drink your amazing, originally flavored kombucha, just give out your fruits and / or herbs, pour them in and enjoy them. If I use a 1/2-gallon mason jar for my fermentation vat, I like to use it this stainless steel filter weight for super light weight. Yes, I know it's meant for making cold-brewed coffee, and I know I use a quart sized filter in my 1/2-gallon glass. I've been putting my Kombucha down for years with this handy dandy option, and I think the manufacturer is missing a great opportunity by not marketing this filter to Kombucha brewers. But hey, I think it's okay if it's just our little secret.
Of course, I often use it a sieve like this also.
Michelle Visser is a member of The Prairie Homestead team that also writes about SoulyRested.com, Her family grows some of their own food, raises some farm animals and produces their own natural maple sugar in rural New England. Michelle was featured in Whole Foods Magazine, Capper's Farmer, and Mother Earth News. She is the author of Sweet maple (Affiliate link) and Simple DIY Kombucha,
Hints for the preparation and flavoring of your own Kombucha:
- If you want to achieve this optimal fermentation temperature, there are ways to keep your fermentation vessel at a constant, rather warm temperature. Some people put their tankard on a normal old one heating pad, Others swear on something likeBrühgürtel"You can wrap around or put under your fermentation vessel (bonus, in the spring it serves as a great starter heating pad for seedlings). I am usually a simple girl and I think so a thread of sparkling lightsWrapped around my brewing pot, it works well for me.
- If you want to dive into kombucha production effortlessly, people at Kombucha Artisan have put together all the necessary items for you This nice starter kit, Then I can only recommend it this organic scobyYou can get BOGO for a limited time, only for The Prairie Homestead Tribe, only Order here and use the coupon code BOGOSCOBY. Read this post For more specific ideas, if you want to put together a completely unique starter kit to give to a friend or yourself.
- Of course, the tea you use for your first fermentation will have a huge impact on your final taste, regardless of what you use for the spice of your second fermentation. This mix of peasant teas is the perfect choice if you like a wonderful, robust kombucha. This specialty mix Only at Kombucha Artisan you will find an original blend of black, green and white teas that will provide a milder first fermentation and give your aromas of the second fermentation a little more shine. And I love to use Loseblattrooibos (This is an affiliate link to the best I've ever found.) Rooibos is a naturally sweet tea that is so delicious that it's delicious if you just want to prepare and drink a first fermentation. But it also fits in wonderfully with everything I've ever added to seasoning Kombucha.
- Kombucha is a great choice for your gut and a fully customizable carbonated DIY drink. Enjoy the fact that there are so many variables and that every time you work on the Kombucha flavoring you can stumble upon your new favorite. So do not hesitate to try something new. And share the comments with when you meet the ones you love the most!
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