Make Your Own Kombucha
(for 1 liter)
We recommend brewing batches of 3-5 liters at a time
approx. 3 g (1 tablespoon) black tea
1 liter of water
0.5 dl white sugar
0.1 l finished kombucha
seasoning according to personal preference
What you need
a kombucha culture
a container with a large opening
kitchen towel, rubber band
kitchen equipment (pot, strainer, spoon, ladle, knife, funnel)
pressure-proof bottle with tight cap
HOW YOU DO IT
Start by washing all your equipment thoroughly. As with all fermentation, it is important to think about hygiene, otherwise the wrong bacteria may multiply.
Step 1: Brew sweet strong tea
Boil the water. Add the tea and let it boil for 5 to 7 minutes. Strain out the tea leaves and add the sugar. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from stove.
Step 2: Cool the tea down to room temperature
Allow the tea to cool to room temperature. To speed up the cooling, you can put the pan with the lid on in cold water.
Step 3: Transfer the kombucha culture to the tea
Pour the tea into the container and add the kombucha culture. For the sake of hygiene, you should preferably not touch it directly with your hands, but rather use a spoon or tongs. Then add the finished kombucha from the previous batch (about 10% of the volume) to the container. Cover the container with a kitchen towel and secure it with a rubber band.
Step 4: Leave for 1 to 2 weeks
Place the container in a warm protected place. Ideal temperature is a few degrees above room temperature. Leave for 1 to 2 weeks.
The kombucha is ready when it tastes sour. How sour it should be is up to you - taste to see what you think is best!
Step 5 (if desired): Flavor the kombucha and carbonate it
(In that step, you have also already started a new batch of kombucha – that is, starting with step 1 again.)
Pour the finished kombucha into pressure-proof bottles. (Add a little extra sugar if you like. It carbonates the kombucha more and gives the final product a slightly sweet taste.) Clean the taster and cut it into small pieces. Place the flavoring in the bottle, close and leave for 3 to 5 days in a warm, dark place. Then store the bottles in the refrigerator. Enjoy!
good to remember
You can use a variety of teas to make kombucha, but beware of teas that contain essential oils, such as Earl Grey. Roots Kombucha uses black tea because in our experience it gives the best results. In addition, it is the black tea traditionally used in kombucha brewing.
You can also test other energy sources than sugar for the culture, for example agave syrup, but then you can count on more variable results. Avoid honey, which contains natural antibacterial substances that can inhibit kombucha culture.
You can experiment with both tea and sugar amounts to find the strength and sweetness you like best.
Feel free to try different flavorings – for example leaves, berries and roots – but always be careful to clean them.
Once your kombucha culture has grown, it's time to share it. Pull it apart with the help of a kitchen utensil – it usually goes easily. You can save half in a glass jar covered with kombucha in the refrigerator. Then you have a backup culture in case your culture goes bad or if you want to give one away.
Keep track of your kombucha culture. If it starts to look strange and/or the kombucha tastes strange, it's best to throw the culture away and start with a new one.
Never use ceramic containers to make or store kombucha. Kombucha is acidic and thus has the ability to dissolve heavy metals from the ceramic glaze. Metal is also not good for kombucha culture, with the exception of stainless steel which is fine to use. Glass, wood and food-grade plastic are the most suitable materials.
The ideal temperature for kombucha fermentation is 2 to 5 degrees above room temperature, but it also works at lower or higher temperatures. The lower the temperature, the slower the fermentation. The warmer the kombucha culture is, the faster the process occurs. But it cannot handle temperatures higher than about 30 degrees.