This Kombucha recipe has been provided by Mathew Paulson – master brewer at Brewcha.
Kombucha is a sparkling probiotic tea which aids our gut health. Over 70% percent of our immunity comes from the gut and having kombucha and other fermented foods helps improve overall gut health. I decided to sell Kombucha commercially after years of making it at home for friends and family. Most things you need to do it would mostly be found lying around at your home.
So let’s get started. This recipe makes a 4 litre batch of kombucha. You can adjust the recipe based on the amount you would be making at home. In case of any queries please get in touch with Mathew on Instagram @brewcha.kombucha.
- Glass jar (4 litre size recommended): The size of the jar required depends on how much you want to make. The rule that works is weekly consumption multiplied by two as it takes around 2 weeks to get a batch ready.
- A piece of cloth: This is used to cover the lid of the glass jar to ensure flies or any other particles do not contaminate the brew.
- Rubber band
- A ladle or any long spoon to stir the jar.
- Scoby & unflavoured Kombucha: Scoby stands for symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast. You will also need some unflavoured kombucha to get things started. This is like how our moms add some curd from the old batch to get the new one started. Adding unflavoured kombucha helps to make the brew acidic enough to provide a safe environment for our kombucha batch to grow. I personally would recommend adding 20% of your total batch size as a kombucha starter eg: For a 4-litre batch add around 800ml. Incases, where the kombucha added, is strong, less would suffice.
- Chlorine-free water
- Sugar: Your daily white sugar would suffice. 200 grams for 4 liters would be ideal. It sounds like a lot of sugar but after fermentation, the bacteria and yeast would have consumed most of it. To give you a comparison a cold-pressed orange juice would have 320 grams of sugar in 4 liters. Kombucha in almost all cases is the least sugary option if made right.
- Tea: You can use any type of tea for a batch of Kombucha. Its recommended that you first use either green or black tea and then move on to experimenting with other types of tea.
- Strawberries: 200 grams for flavouring. (Only needed a week after brewing)
Step 1: Clean the glass jar & Spoon — Hygiene is very important when you make Kombucha and cleaning both with hot water is recommended.
Step 2: Fill half the glass jar with drinking water.
Step 3: Boil around 600 ml of water for green tea and 800 ml if your using black tea. For green tea the ideal brewing temperature is around 76 degrees. You can adjust this by adding 200 ml of normal water to bring the temperature down. In case of black tea the brewing temperature is around 98 degrees. Add 20 grams of loose leaf tea of either kind and let it brew for 3 minutes. Make sure you don’t brew for longer as you might get off flavours and bitterness especially in the case of green tea.
Step 4: Strain the tea leaves and add the tea to the glass jar filled with water.
Step 5: Add 200 grams of sugar
Step 6: Close the glass jar for 10 minutes with the cloth and rubber band and let it cool down. The bacteria and yeast in kombucha don’t survive at high temperatures and this will ensure we don’t accidentally kill any of it.
Step 7: Add 800 ml of unflavoured kombucha. The more acidic the kombucha, the less you will have to add. It’s safer to add a sufficient amount as mold or any pathogens can’t grow below a PH of 4.5. As best practice we start all our brews at a PH of around 4.
Step 8: Add the scoby and close the jar with the cloth and rubber band.
After a week
Step 9: You can start tasting your brew. Kombucha is a sour tangy drink with a subtle sweetness. Taste is the best guide to know when your batch is ready. Green tea kombucha in most cases take longer to brew than black tea kombucha.
Step 10: Remove the SCOBY and take some kombucha from the top for your next batch. We take kombucha from the top as the bottom part has higher yeast concentration compared to the top. Now we can flavour our kombucha.
Step 11: You can flavour your kombucha with strawberries or any fruit of your choice. If your flavouring your kombucha, you should add the fruit before your kombucha batch is very sour as the fruit needs to ferment in the brew for 2 days. Slice 200 grams of strawberries into thin pieces so that there is more contact area for the strawberry and kombucha.
Step 12: Bottle and Enjoy it. You might want to leave it outside for a few days to carbonate it. I personally like adding a piece of fruit in every bottle while bottling too.