Kombucha For Health and Taste
You may have heard that green tea is really good for you and helps your immune system, well Kombucha does too. There have been many claiming the health benefits including increasing the metabolism, improving your immune system, improving brain function, it can lower your risk of cancer, and it can lower the risk of Alzheimer’s. These are just a few of the many benefits that green tea can bring. See AuthorityNutrition.com for more information.
A Fermented Drink
Now bring on Kombucha, a fermented drink made with tea, sugar, and yeast. People brew Kombucha with green tea which gives you all the benefits of it, but because this drink is naturally fermented it adds a few other perks to the picture. Among the added benefits are natural detoxification, rich in vitamins, like B, and enzymes which increase energy. It has also been claimed to improve metabolism, PMS relief, and relief of joint and arthritis pain. See just a few of the benefits Kombucha has here.
I started drinking more and more tea when I saw my acupuncturist for my knee pain. She mentioned I should start drinking certain teas to help keep the inflammation down in my joints. Ginger, turmeric, and cinnamon were among the herbs she recommended so I decided to try some teas. It worked remarkably for me and added some pain relief when I started drinking them daily.
One day when I was in the supermarket I saw Kombucha tea for sale. Becuase I had seen it at farmers markets before and wondered what it was, I decided it was time to try it. When I cracked open my lemon, cayenne, ginger flavored kombucha tea and I was amazed! It tasted really good! It was a blend of natural carbonation, tea, and spices that were amazing. As a result, I started trying other flavors like berry and spiced apple kava. I loved them all. The only problem with this awesome drink was that the price of one bottle was anywhere from$3 on up, so it was time to learn how to make it at home to support my new kombucha habit.
Since that day, I have discovered how to make my own Kombucha and am including the recipe here on this outdoor cooking site because 1. It is flu season. 2. The world is seeing a lot of crazy scary disease spreading rampantly and thus a need to bolster our immune systems. 3. It just tastes good. Plus if you want to bottle it you can easily take this camping with you and will make an excellent refreshing drink for all your camping activities.
This is a list of equipment for getting started. I use all organic ingredients and distilled water. This list is short and very inexpensive compared to buying it in a supermarket which adds up quickly over very little time.
- one-gallon jar
- Scoby or mother (also an ingredient)
- Rubber band
- coffee filter or small cloth
- Optional – seedling heating pad
If you want to try this recipe, then you will need these items. The seedling heating pad is only needed if your brewing area is below 70°. You should try to maintain the temperature between 70° and 80°. The above photo is my gallon jug with a new batch brewing. Below is that same jug with the heating pad. I live in my RV, and the temperature can often get below 70° so I use the pad often.
The Mother (or Scoby)
Now you are probably wondering what a Scoby is. To put it bluntly, it’s a colony of bacteria and yeast. As the Kombucha is brewing, the mother will grow a baby which you use for the next batch of Kombucha and the original mother is then discarded. Mother has been used to clean wounds, soothe sunburns, stop dandruff, and soothe sore throats among other great uses, so you do not need to throw it away.
For this article, I’m not discussing the many flavoring options available. If you have any of your own ideas for flavoring this drink please share them in the comments. With flavoring, you can turn this into a soda substitute that will keep your kids coming back for more, and they don’t ever have to know how healthy it is for them.
Notes: Do not use plastic or metal to brew your Kombucha as it will leach the plastic and the metal will break down.
One of the healthiest drinks you can brew. This delicious brewed green tea will keep your immune system intact.
- 8 -10 bags organic green tea
- 1 gal distilled water
- 1 c sugar
- 1 live organic scoby or mother
Take the distilled water and pour about 3/4 into the glass jar. Pour the remain 1/4 into a sauce pan, dissolve the sugar, and bring to a boil.
Once the water comes to a boil add the tea bags and remove from the heat. Steep for 10 minutes.
Let cool for about 10 or 20 more minutes.
Pour into the gallon just and give a slight stir to mix the tea.
Once the water reaches about 70°, add the mother, cover the top with a cloth or coffee filter and secure with a rubber band.
Cover the jar so that little light gets in the jar. If you are using the heating pad you can wrap it around the jar.
Let brew for 7 to 10 days. You should taste after 7 days, if it no longer has a strong sweet taste it is done. I usually brew mine for about 9 days.
Transfer to bottles or pour from the jar. Many people use a jar with a spigot for ease. Make sure to store the drink in a refrigerator or cold place or it may continue to brew and turn to vinegar.