Simply put, kombucha is a fermented sweet tea that is traditionally brewed with black tea and cane sugar.
Kombucha, once called mushroom tea, is a fermented sweet tea of ancient origins dating back over 2,000 years. Recently the amount of people drinking kombucha has spiked with the popularity of fermented beverages and the many claimed health benefits of kombucha. It’s effervescent, slightly tart, slightly sweet, and fermented! There is still a lot unknown about all the health benefits of kombucha, but it is claimed to support gut health, help with weight loss, blood sugar levels, heart problems, heart disease, and overall support of your immune system.
How Kombucha is Made
Kombucha is easy to make. Again, kombucha is made from a base of sweet tea, which is then fermented and transformed into an effervescent, probiotic drink. The recipe starts with making sweet tea with black tea and or green tea plus sugar. Sugar is added for the fermentation; it’s important to note that it is mostly for the yeast to eat during the fermentation process. Once the yeast is done eating, there will be very little sugar left in the final drink. Once you have sweet tea made, you will then add a kombucha starter culture, which is commonly referred to as the SCOBY. The term SCOBY is an acronym that stands for symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast. A SCOBY consists of both kombucha starter tea and a pellicle. The starter tea is aged kombucha and is where the vast majority of the living culture is found. The pellicle is the gelatinous glob. Despite common belief, the pellicle isn’t alive; it’s a structure that contains addition living kombucha bacteria and yeast. Once you add the SCOBY to the sweet tea, it will start the fermentation process. Now we wait for it to ferment. This can take anywhere from 7 to 21 days, which largely depends on temperature. The fermentation process is where the SCOBY will eat the sugar and tannins present in the tea and create all kinds of good stuff as byproducts! By good stuff, I mean B vitamins, enzymes, and antioxidants, all ready to help keep your digestion on the reg and boost your overall immunity!