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Old 09-01-2010, 06:19 PM   #11
juvinious
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Your shroom cap is your mother. Since you made a starter it more than likely will be small which the mushroom will grow to the size of your vessel. Your starter should be sour or acidic which should be added to the tea you plan to ferment to help lower the PH to prevent any contamination from undesirables. Once you've got to the level of acidity you want in your tea you may bottle it up (beware though as it'll continue to eat through the sugars which can end up as bottle bombs). You reserve some of the soured tea with the mother (shroom cap) in it for your next brew. I have a 2 gallon vessel and I leave my mother in there with about 1/8th of the liquid until I have another batch of tea ready to go into it.

Here is a general rule I go by for formulating a recipe stepping it up or down as necessary:

For 1 Gallon:

6-8 bags of Tea (depending on how strong you want it)
1 cup sugar
About 1/2 - 1 pint of previous kombucha

Boil about 1/3 of the water, remove from heat and steep tea for 15 mins. Add sugar to dissolve and then cool. Add previous kombucha and water to make up 1 gallon and add to vessel. Put mother back into tea and allow to ferment for 2 weeks or longer depending on your taste. If you let it go beyond a month or so, you'll end up pretty much with vinegar (I mean if that's what you like).

Have fun.

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Old 09-01-2010, 06:41 PM   #12
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Rad!

Ok, so you keep about 1/8th of the mother to store the cap in. Then, would you add more of the fermented tea back into the mother to top it off?

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Old 09-01-2010, 07:46 PM   #13
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The cap (mushroom/mother) goes into the tea that is fermenting. I mean without it'll end up rebuilding another but it'll take it a bit longer to ferment. But yeah (I guess 1/8 is a bad estimate) when storing the cap (when you are not fermenting any) I'd keep enough of the fermented tea with it to keep it satisfied and from drying out.

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Old 09-25-2010, 10:40 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vacax View Post
I also would not brew with honey as there is a large portion that is non-fermentable.
No, there isn't. Honey is basically completely fermentable, with 1-2% being complex sugars that might not ferment, compared to around 80% simple sugars.
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Old 09-27-2010, 08:01 PM   #15
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Default kombucha on tap?

Has anyone kegged their kombucha brew? I know many people say not to let metal touch the brew . . . but will properly cleaned stainless steel cause problems? I know there are a few companies out there selling kegged kombucha and from what I can tell, they aren't using kombucha specific equipment.

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Old 09-29-2010, 03:25 AM   #16
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I have kegged a batch. I don't see how kombucha would be any different from kegging a sour beer.

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Old 09-29-2010, 05:50 PM   #17
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Honey has them antimicrobial traits to it, so bear that in mind especially with a young/nonexistent mother. You might do fine with a big fat mother like I have, especially if you do part honey and part sugar (or agave syrup if table sugar's not your thing)..

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Old 10-01-2010, 06:51 AM   #18
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Yes, quite. I probably should have been more helpful in my last post, but I have a knee-jerk reaction every time someone claims honey contains high proportions of non-fermentable sugars.

While quite a bit of honey's antimicrobial properties come from the high concentration of sugar and won't be much of an issue once you dilute it, there are other factors in play (PH and chemical compounds) that make it less attractive for culturing your scoby.

Time for my second knee-jerk topic: refined just means pure. Table sugar contains no bee parts or other organic ash, no extra chemicals that your bacteria might dislike, no water. Honey's composition is extremely close to that of one of the most reviled forms of "refined" sugar, high fructose corn syrup. HFCS is fructose, glucose, and water; honey is mainly fructose, glucose and water, with some sucrose (more familiarly, refined table sugar), maltose, and small amounts of misc. thrown in. Excessive amounts of sugar are bad for you, no matter if they're purified first or not. You probably wouldn't think replacing the table sugar with HFCS a great idea, so why do you think honey is the way to go?

Anyway, if you're determined to use honey: I recommend doing your initial culture using table sugar, thus avoiding any issues arising from honey's antimicrobial properties, then discarding most of that liquid and replacing it with your real, honey-sweetened base once your scoby is going strong.

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