Good day all,
I have been brewing kombucha for almost 2 months now and I wanted to share my experience. (Thank you to my wonderful fiancée for such excellent story telling.) I welcome all comments and questions.
The baby scoby.
SCOBY stands for symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast. Basically, these guys are working together to create what turns out to be a feast for your digestive system. It has healthy living probiotics, enzymes, B vitamins, antioxidants, and organic acids, while also being recognized as a detoxifying, energizing, immune enhancing wellness drink.
After every batch you make, a baby scoby like this one forms at the top of your container, and you can use it just like the mama scoby to make a new batch! In this way, you can make endless batches of kombucha, from one scoby mother culture.
The mama culture (SCOBY).
We got our mother scoby from a couple offering one free online. Theirs was a bit wider around than our jar, but as you can see in the previous picture, it formed the baby scoby perfectly round (if not a lot smaller- which is just fine).
As you can see, we re-purposed some G.T. Dave's bottles to store ours in.
You can add sucanat and organic fresh or frozen fruit to flavor your kombucha.
Here we have, from left to right: unflavored, blackberry, strawberry, blueberry, and mango.
The kombucha is not bottled until after fermentation, which can last anywhere from 4 days to 3 weeks (so I've read). We let ours ferment in a dark closet for a little over 2 weeks before we decided it smelled like the store-bought original flavor that we're used to.
Today, we bottled it. These 5 are gonna hang out back in the closet for another few days, so they have the chance to become effervescent and bubbly, like good kombucha should be.
We transferred both the mother scoby and the baby scoby to a bigger container. The baby is the little round guy on top. The mother is about as wide as the bottom of the jar.
Tonight we will add sugary sweet black tea to this jar, and begin fermenting our second batch.
I think our 5 bottle batch will be beautiful, but we'll see what happens.
Our first look at the bottled kombucha after it sat in the closet for 4 days. You can see the culture on the bottom of the bottle now.
They look so happy together! You can see the bubbles, which we hope are a sign that our drink is effervescent now. We will find out for sure tonight, when we open our first bottle!
More culture strands, aren't they pretty and mysteriously magical?
After these pictures were taken, we put all 5 bottles in the fridge, which should help make them even more bubbly.
The whole gang, lined up again. You can see the kombucha has taken on more of the color of the fruit that was added to it.
Transferring sweet black tea to the jar with our mother culture.
Here, you can clearly see the mommy scoby floating on top. She likes her new jar much better than the one she was cramped in before.
View from above of the mother culture, as tea is being added.
It's official! Our homemade kombucha is the absolute best that we have ever tasted! It tastes almost like a fruity spritzer, and is absolutely refreshing.
I wish I could share the way this tastes with all of you. So far we've tried strawberry, blackberry, and blueberry.
Pictured here is the blackberry. I think this is my favorite flavor we've created.
Our second batch of homemade kombucha, chillin' in the fridge.
We filled 19 bottles in all.
We made mostly strawberry and blackberry because these have been our favorite flavors so far, and we wanted to share some with family and friends.
In addition to the 6 strawberry and 5 blackberry bottles, we had 2 original, 2 blueberry-raspberry, 2 raspberry-mango, 1 blueberry, and 1 pineapple.
The gorgeous shade of this batch of kombucha, before fruit is added.
The new mommy! She looks healthy as can be.
The mother scoby grows to be the width of the jar, actually creating a natural seal that keeps carbon dioxide from being released, which is what makes kombucha effervescent.
At the time this picture was taken, we had about 24 empty G.T. Dave's bottles. Now we have about 40, but we are always accepting more!
We have intentions for starting an additional batch, so we plan on yielding about 40 bottles after our next fermentation. Which means we'll have plenty to share with friends, especially those with empty bottles laying around.
Kombucha in it's original, unflavored glory.
Today, we tried the raspberry-mango.
No offense to blackberry, but I think it's my new personal favorite.
Happy brewing to all! I look forward to being a part of this community.