We had a unique tea experience in the Studio this week—our Kombucha class.
Kombucha is a fermented beverage made from true tea. It requires a starter scoby (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast) which helps perpetuate tea and sugar into a probiotic, fizzy, pleasant drink. There are numerous advocating health claims made about kombucha and I recommend doing some research about it before you decide if it is right for you. Wikipedia.org has a great feature on the kombucha—discussing everything from the fermenting process to the prevention of mold.
Nathan Rausch, organic farmer, bee-keeper, and kombucha expert showed a group of us the step-by-step process for making our own fermented tea. He recommends starting with a glass container versus any other type. You should look up an actual recipe for making the fermented beverage, but I’ll go through the steps he showed us.
It actually starts with green or black tea, which is steeped weaker (less loose tea is used) than for traditional tea and for a much longer time than normally recommended (15 minutes). Nathan only recommends organic teas so we used the Organic English Breakfast Tea in the Studio—steeping the tea, adding sugar till dissolved and then cooling it down with an ice bath. We then added a scoby and a little finished kombucha from a previous batch he’d brought with him and secured a “breathable” cover over the top. This batch will ferment at room temperature for a week.
Nathan brought a couple of samples of one week old and two week old kombucha for the group to taste so we could see how the flavor develops. I really like the flavor of the finished kombucha and am going to make my own. Thank you Nathan and Kathy Rausch for a practical and informative class!