IT’S TIME. So much “developing microorganisms in a dim storage room while hoping and praying it really becomes something heavenly” is, at last, moving toward the day of proof. I have given my best to guide you through the easiest and most sustainable method for preparing your own fermented tea (Kombucha) at home, yet this is where you get to walk off and figure out what truly suits your preferences and tastes.
I am continuously searching for that ideal blend between what takes minimal time and what delivers the bubbliest, most delicious Kombucha. You will learn now that packaging and flavoring can, and ought to, be changed frequently until you find what works for you. This implies you could let your fermented Kombucha a bit longer, a bit shorter, or in an alternate region of your kitchen. You could fill your bottles pretty much; you will attempt a wide range of flavor choices. Even if it sounds daunting, I guarantee it’s not! Simply have fun with it – experiment!
So, it’s what we are going to do. In the first place, I’ll let you know how to bottle and ferment your tea to drink, and second I’ll give you a couple of tips and flavor ideas. Feel free to contact me anytime you need help with fermenting your Kombucha.
Second Fermentation: Bottling Your Kombucha
Case of 6 – 16 oz. Easy Cap Bottles
Fruit, juice, and herbs for flavoring
For the continuous brew:
14 cups of water (3.5 quarts)
1 cup sugar
8 bags of black tea, green tea, or a mix
2 cups of starter tea from the last batch of Kombucha
Note: I always find it useful to read through the complete process before starting!
Start with Continuous Brew
- Start by boiling the water and add sugar also. Stir it to dissolve. Brew the solution with the tea bags until the water cools down.
- After washing your hands, remove SCOBY from the jar and place it on a clean plate. Be careful not to touch any metal; otherwise, your SCOBY will weaken over time. Keep two cups of Kombucha tea for your second brew.
- Transfer the rest of the Kombucha tea to the bowl with a spout as I found pouring tea into the bottles this way easier.
- Take a clean gallon-size jar and pour your cooled sweet tea into it. Add 2 cups of Kombucha tea to it and stir.
- In the end, slide the SCOBY carefully into the jar and cover it with a paper towel. Secure it with a rubber band also. Let it leave for fermentation for 7-10 days. Repeat it.
Note: Your SCOBY will continue to grow at this point. You’ll see a fresh layer form on the top! For every fresh batch, peel off the bottom (oldest) layer. Toss it or give it to a friend who wants to brew their own Kombucha, too!
Bottle the Kombucha Tea
- Distribute your flavorings into each container.
- Utilizing a pipe, empty your fermented tea into the containers, leaving around 1/2 an inch at the top. Ensure the top is secure so no oxygen can enter the container. Set the containers in a place away from direct daylight to ferment for 1-3 days.
- Significant! You need to burp your bottles. That’s right. All that carbon dioxide develops and can break your glass bottle into millions of pieces, heaving Kombucha all around your kitchen. (It happened to me once and seemed like a bomb.) Every morning, flip open the top over your sink to let a portion of the gas out.
- When you are prepared to stop fermentation and carbonation, put the containers in your refrigerator to chill. Fermentation will slow right now, yet it will proceed. This fundamentally implies your fermented tea will grow somewhat tarter over the long run.
- Prior to drinking, I like to pour my tea through a strainer so that it’s quite smooth and nice.
Tips to Encourage Fizzy Carbonation + How to Flavor
How Does It Carbonate?
You carbonate Kombucha by adding sugar and diminishing its capacity to retain oxygen. Thus, besides the fact that we add the fruit to make it savory, fruit is crucial for making it bubbly!
It might require a couple of attempts around to figure out how you like your tea. If you need a more grounded flavor, let it ferment longer in the jar. Assuming that you need it less sweet, let it ferment longer in the bottle. Find what suits your taste.
My Tea Isn’t Frizzy. What Do I Do?
If you find that your fermented tea isn’t carbonating to your taste, there are a couple of things you can attempt:
- Pass on it to ferment longer in the jar
- Attempt an alternate fruit or puree (recall that natural products have various measures of sugar)
- Fill the bottle nearer to the top
How Do I Flavor My Tea?
This is the exciting part! You can try any type of fruit (fresh or frozen is fine), juice, tea, or even herbs. Here’s a general guide:
- If you are using juice: 2-3 tablespoons per bottle
- If you are using fruit puree: 1 tablespoon per bottle
- If you are using cut fruit: 2 tablespoons per bottle
Raspberry + Lemon + Ginger
Apple Cider + Lemon
Blueberry + Ginger
Simple Syrup + Grapefruit
Cranberry + Citrus
Apple Juice + Cinnamon Stick
Strawberry + Lime
Strawberry + Thyme
Watermelon + Lime
Sweet Hibiscus Tea
Post-fermentation, you could add a drop of your favorite essential oil, mix it with sparkling water, or even make a cocktail; it’s up to you.
I hope you guys have enjoyed this guide and that you feel encouraged and empowered to brew your own Kombucha at home. Please check in with me and share how it’s going, your favorite flavor combos, and how your day was suddenly brightened as you sipped the Kombucha that you made all by yourself while enjoying the sweet little happy moments of life.