MAKING KOMBUCHA TEA.
THE KT BABY: Keep at room temperature and use as soon as possible after you receive it. If it is in an airtight
container, take the lid off and cover with a clean cloth secured by a rubber band - the KT baby needs to breath.
is not totally covered with liquid, add sufficient white vinegar to immerse.
BREWING: You will need ~
glass or stainless steel saucepan (immaculately clean).
~ A one gallon glass pickle jar or equivalent, washed rinsed
~ A plastic mesh strainer and a wooden or plastic spoon.
~ 6 teabags (without staples) or six teaspoons
of loose tea, black, green or rooibos. Do not use herbal tea.
~ A gallon of pure or distilled water that has been boiled
for at least ten minutes in a glass or stainless steel pot.
~ A cup of white sugar.
~ A clean tea towel and a big
~ Very clean, scrubbed hands with rings removed.
1. Bring to a boil about half of your water,
then add the cup of sugar.
2. While still boiling, add tea, cover and remove from heat. Allow to brew for about fifteen
3. Strain to remove teabags or loose tea.
4. Fill jar to a little less than half with the cooled boiled
water. Add tea mixture, leaving room at top of jar for the baby and its liquid.
5. It is important to use all the tea
and all the baby's liquid, but adjust the amount of cooled water.
6. Add the KT baby and the liquid it is floating in.
7. Cover with tea towel and secure with rubber band.
8. Put in a quuiet place, out of direct sunlight, with a stable
temperature of 75 degrees or less. Warmer temperatures will create too much carbon dioxide in your brew. Cooler will slow
the development time. Leave undisturbed for about six days.
10. Check for readiness by sliding a clean turkey baster
between the culture and the glass, and taking out a couple of ounces to taste. If it is noticeably sweet, leave for a few
more days, checking daily. If it is tangy, with a little 'bite' it is ready to bottle.
BOTTLING: I use sterilised
glass bottles. (If you have ever tried to sterilise a plastic pop bottle, you will understand why glass is a must!) Wash and
rinse bottles very thoroughly before sterilising - traces of soap or chlorine can kill your culture.
tops for your bottles. If they do not have plastic liners, you will need food wrap to cover bottles before capping. NO METAL
must touch the brew.
Scrub and rinse hands carefully. Remove rings or use a clean rubber glove, and lift out the KT starters
carefully (you will now have two). Separate and place in a glass or plastic container with enough tea to cover.
rest of liquid into bottles, filling right to the top so that no air space is left. Cap and keep at room temperature for a
few days. This allows it to become carbonated - if you prefer it still, drink at any time. Store in the fridge after the taste
Start a new brew, or give away your spare babies, as soon as possible.
THINGS THAT MAY HARM YOUR
* Too much heat.
* Not enough oxygen (cover only with cloth to allow air).
* Anti-bacterial soap.
* Exposure to metals (trace poisons may be leached).
* Ceramic containers with lead glazes.
Air-borne contaminants - insects, cigarette smoke, bug spray.
* Time. A culture may last for months or even years, but
if it becomes very soft or smells different, it is time to put it in the compost.Expect that each culture will become darker
with use, as it absorbs tannin from the tea.
REMEMBER THAT THIS IS A BENIGN LIVING ORGANISM.
TREAT IT WITH
'CONTINUOUS BREW' KT.
Simply prepare about half of
your tea mixture, cool and add to container when the level has dropped sufficiently.
I am finding that this method gives
a better balance of nutrients. Thin out the 'babies' when they take up too much of your jar.