Originally from Asia, known in China as ‘the elixir of life’, Kombucha is fermented, sweetened tea. This recipe comes from chef Douglas McMaster of zero waste restaurant, SILO and the Old Tree Brewery.
SCOBY is a gelanitous layer of cellulose, which grows on the surface of the sweetened tea. It is composed of different yeasts and acetobacter. The yeasts convert the sugars into ethanol and the acetobacter convert the ethanol into acetic acid. There are smaller amounts of several other bacteria strains within the SCOBY, including lactobacilli. As well as sugar, tea is essential for the growth of the SCOBY. It is thought that at least 75% of the caffeine is consumed during the fermentation.
Wrap the tea in the muslin and tie with the string.
Boil one litre of filtered or spring water and add it to the two litre glass jar.
Add the tea and sugar to the jar and stir, then leave to infuse for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes add the remaining litre of water to the glass jar.
Add the SCOBY as well as the 200ml of ready Kombucha.
Photo Credit – XDB Photography