Kombucha. For those of you who haven’t heard of it, either read this blog post or google it. Or both.
Kombucha is a fermented tea that contains probiotics because of the yeast and bacteria inside of it. How do you get this yeast and bacteria inside of it? With a SCOBY of course. A SCOBY stands for a symbiotic community of bacteria and yeast. They are disgusting looking (see my SCOBY below), but they create delicious, healthy, fizzy drinks.
You can make a SCOBY, but it is easiest to get one from someone who already has a Kombucha starter. With each fermentation a SCOBY will develop one or more “layers”. The new layer that it develops is a new SCOBY- a baby SCOBY. Because of this, people who already have starters can easily donate a SCOBY for your Kombucha making projects. You can also order SCOBYs online or make one yourself, but that’s no fun.How did I get my SCOBY you ask?
I was at a potluck staff dinner at Cherry Grove Farm last summer, and I started talking to a nice guy. We were discussing many different things, but eventually got on the topic of fermentation, which led to kombucha (naturally). I said I didn’t know where to find a starter and he offered me one of his. A few days later I drove to his apartment (sketchy, I know) and he gave me a mason jar with a SCOBY inside!
Ever since then I have been using this SCOBY to make small batches of all different flavored Kombucha. The process is simple, there are two feremtations. The first you brew tea, add sugar, and add the SCOBY. Then, you let the SCOBY mixture ferment in a cool, dark place for about a week.
Stay tuned for the finished result!