Perfect For The Summertime Heat
Talk about a party in your mouth! All this kombucha is missing is the Tequila. The tartness of the kombucha with the watermelon and lime transform this drink into a real fiesta for your taste buds. Perfect for the summertime heat! Speaking of the heat, the cayenne pepper sneaks up on you right at the end. It isn’t overpowering at all. It just keeps you wanting more! Of course, you can add as much or as little cayenne as you’d like. It’s important that you enjoy it, so if you don’t like heat, you can literally add none, and it would still be delicious. I’m a spice junkie, so I’ll keep adding more to see what I can handle. Start with a little and add more if you’d like!
PRIMARY VS SECONDARY FERMENTATION
It’s important to note that brewing homemade kombucha is almost always a two-step fermentation process. Brewing kombucha is only a one-step process for those who prefer an unflavored flat kombucha. Otherwise, the steps consist of a primary fermentation and secondary fermentation.
- Primary Fermentation: The primary fermentation is the first step of the kombucha brewing process. This is where your SCOBY transforms regular sweet tea into the tart and slightly sweet kombucha we love. At the end of this stage, you will have finished kombucha, but it will be flat and unflavored. Have you skipped this step? Then check out our guide on making kombucha at home or our guide on making jun kombucha at home. Traditional kombucha is going to yield a bolder brew, while jun kombucha is milder and a bit more tart.
- Secondary Fermentation: The secondary fermentation is the step where you bottle, carbonate, and flavor your kombucha by the addition of sugar and flavors. This step is essentially adding a bit of sugar/flavor to each airtight bottle and letting it ferment a little longer, allowing the yeast to carbonate the beverage in an airtight environment naturally. How exactly does this happen? See our post on kombucha secondary fermentation here.
Since this recipe is for the secondary fermentation, to make this recipe, you’ll need to have kombucha that has finished the primary fermentation and ready to bottle.
- Kombucha: You need kombucha that has completed primary fermentation and is ready to bottle and flavor.
- Watermelon Pure/Juice: A sweet tangy flavor that dominates the flavor of this drink.
- Ground Cayenne Pepper: The amount you use will determine how spicy your drink is.
- Lime Juice: Fresh lime juice is tart and bright. It’s a great addition to any water kefir recipe but also plays well with other citrus fruits.
SECONDARY FERMENTATION PREPARATION
This recipe makes one 16 fluid ounce bottle. For a 1-gallon batch, make 7 16 ounce bottles of kombucha or times the ingredients by 7. Before beginning this recipe, you will want to:
- Reserve 12 – 16 fluid ounces of kombucha and your pellicle from your completed primary fermentation and set aside. It’s best to pour from the top of the brew jar as the bottom will have a much higher yeast concentration. You will use this as your starter for your next gallon batch of kombucha.
- With your kombucha starter tea and SCOBY placed aside, you will now have enough kombucha left to make seven 16 oz bottles. These bottles are the most popular as they are considered the best bottles for kombucha secondary fermentation, but any other airtight bottles made for carbonation will work.