For those out there who haven’t yet heard about Kombucha, here’s a short introduction.
The exact origin of Kombucha is not known, although it seems to have links with Asia and Russia. It is thought to date back about 2000 years and became popular in the 90’s and again recently when its probiotic powers were rediscovered.
Kombucha is a fermented black tea (sometimes green tea is also used). Sugar (don’t worry about the sugar, that is food for the Scoby) is then added. A Scoby (an abbreviation for Symbiotic Colony Of Bacteria and Yeast) is a mushroom- like mass of good bacteria, which is the magic behind Kombucha.
This whole process takes between two and four weeks when you will end up with a fizzy, tangy beverage. As a by-product of fermentation, Kombucha does contain traces of alcohol, only 0.5%, so nothing to get excited about. It’s also slightly caffeinated.
But why would you drink it? Well here are just some of the health benefits…
Kombucha is rich in probiotics, which help to create a balance in your gut. It can help with digestion, bloating and a whole range of gut-related issues.
Kombucha also contains antioxidants, which fight free radicals in the body, preventing or delaying cell damage. Among these antioxidants are also vitamins B1 and B6.
But take care – too much of a good thing can lead to your gut being a little over-active.
Store bought Kombucha is quite expensive (and has been pasteurised) so brewing it at home is actually quite easy and fun and a starter Scoby can be bought online for around £10 which actually replicates every time a batch is brewed with it, so you could give them away to friends or even sell some of your own Scoby babies.
For and in-depth look at Kombucha brewing I found Donna Schwenk to be really helpful and has kindly given me permission to feature her video here. Thanks Donna