Kombucha Tea has recently gained popularity in the United States, but it’s a type of tea that has been consumed for more than 2,000 years for its many health benefits. Single-serving bottles of the fizzy, fermented tea can cost upwards of $3, but read on for instructions on how to make it yourself for pennies a day, and some of the reasons you should try it.
Kombucha is a term for fermented tea, and that is exactly what it is.
Initially, fermentation was a means of food preservation, but the health benefits are too numerous to ignore.
Within our digestive system, there are little finger-like projections called “villi” that line the walls of our intestines. In between these villi, a healthy intestine will have a plethora of probiotics to fight off any harmful bacteria that may enter. These probiotics that occupy this space will prevent the harmful bacteria from “getting in” like when all the spots in a parking lot are full. Having all the spaces occupied will force the bad bacteria to keep moving and be eliminated through your bowel movement.
Although most people think of yogurt when you mention probiotic, fermented foods are a fabulous source of these good bacteria our bodies need so desperately.
The best part of it is that kombucha is relatively simple to make. You just brew some tea, add sugar, put it in a jar with water and leave it on your counter for a week.
The easiest way to brew your own kombucha is to start out with the purchase of a kit.
You will follow the instructions on the kit but here is the gist of it:
You start out with a black tea like an oolong tea or an English Breakfast tea or even green tea. You will brew it in about two (2) cups of water and then add sugar to it. The kit will say the type of sugar doesn’t matter – but I use organic sugar just to be sure and avoid the GMO sugar. This sugar will be used up in the fermentation process.
The kit will come with a SCOBY, which stands for Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast, which sounds really gross, but it is no different than the cultures you use to make yogurt or sauerkraut.
Then after brewing your tea, dissolving the sugar in the hot tea, then adding it to a gallon jar, you will fill it up with cold water to bring the temperature down a bit and add your starter culture. I recommend putting cheesecloth over it with a rubber band to prevent any dust or bacteria falling into it. You cannot put a lid on it as it will be fermenting and emitting carbon dioxide and could cause an explosion!
So you will leave this sit for 7 to 21 days depending on how tart you want it to get. With each day that passes, the sugar will be consumed by the bacteria. It is a natural chemical reaction.
The only part that gets tricky is the pH level which is explained with kit instructions. The pH is essential as it will be what causes these natural chemical reactions.
After you decide that your kombucha is tart enough, you will pour the kombucha off the top into special jars that seal so you don’t lose the fizz. I initially think of the old Grolsch beer bottles with the swing top.
One gallon of kombucha will make five (5) – 16-ounce bottles and you reserve two cups for your next batch. The SCOBY will actually grow with each batch, and you can divide it and share it with your other health-conscious friends.
Get ready to arm your intestinal villi with the probiotics they need to defend their turf by making and consuming your homemade kombucha.
The kit we recommend is: here.