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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Kombucha & Fermented Tea Forum > a question about kombucha starter
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Old 10-22-2012, 02:47 PM   #1
greylock229
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Default a question about kombucha starter

why is kombucha starter tea necessary?

if i just put a kb scoby into a jar of sweet tea, wont it ferment the tea just the same? [is it a time thing? will the process simply take significantly longer?]

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Old 10-22-2012, 04:23 PM   #2
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If I understand you question correctly.. the answer is yes. That is the general process for making KT. Boil 4 qts of distilled or reverse osmosis water.. add 2 green tea and 2 black tea bags.. steep for 10 minutes.. pull bags.. add 1 cup sugar and stir until dissolved and let cool to room temperature.

Hopefully, you have acquired a cup of kombucha tonic/tea to add to the sweet tea you have made. Add it and then add the scoby.. cover with a tight woven cloth (t shirt piece) with a rubber band and store in a room temp dark place for a week or more depending on your taste.

If you don't have the cup of tea from the person you received the scoby from, you can add a cup of raw apple cider vinegar.. but, it's best to have KT. I also understand you can buy a raw KT from a health food store.. or, if you have a Whole Food store or possibly a chinese market.. you might be lucky that way. I've found GT Dave's Kombucha (original, unflavored, raw) to work as a starter just fine.. It's expensive.. but, for a one shot deal.. not bad.

Hope this helps.

Oh, re your original question.. Yep, I think you will likely be ok with just the scoby.. but, the acid in the KT will help prevent mold from forming, giving it a good head start.

Also, don't add too much sugar.. you need to find a balance so you don't overpopulate with yeast.. 1 cup per gallon seems to work.. you'll find your sweet spot..

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Old 10-24-2012, 12:20 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HbgBill View Post
I
If you don't have the cup of tea from the person you received the scoby from, you can add a cup of raw apple cider vinegar.. but, it's best to have KT.
You don't want raw vinegar. The mother in vinegar is not compatible with the mother in Kombucha. You want standard store-bought distilled (or pasteurized or not-labelled-as-raw) white vinegar. Its only purpose is to suppress mold generation at the liquid/air interface until the yeast & bacteria from the scoby have lowered the pH sufficiently to thwart any mold growth.
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Old 10-24-2012, 12:44 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Zapped View Post
You don't want raw vinegar. The mother in vinegar is not compatible with the mother in Kombucha. You want standard store-bought distilled (or pasteurized or not-labelled-as-raw) white vinegar. Its only purpose is to suppress mold generation at the liquid/air interface until the yeast & bacteria from the scoby have lowered the pH sufficiently to thwart any mold growth.
Sorry, my bad.. you are correct.. I got on a roll about raw kombucha..

Thanks for the correction.
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Old 11-12-2012, 04:29 AM   #5
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I've been using two cups of starter tea (finished kombucha) in each new gallon of kombucha I make. Is this bad? Will the finished product be different to using 8oz of starter?

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Old 11-14-2012, 03:09 AM   #6
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I've been using two cups of starter tea (finished kombucha) in each new gallon of kombucha I make. Is this bad? Will the finished product be different to using 8oz of starter?
no; the more starter tea you use, the less time it will take for your brew to reach end-product state. that is all.
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