yields a half gallon | 1 hour total time
6 C water
4 tea bags, flavor of choice
1/2 C raw sugar
1 S.C.O.B.Y. (Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast)
1 C of the previous batch of kombucha
1 half gallon glass jar (can be larger or smaller, just change ratios of ingredients)
1 piece of muslin, cheesecloth, towel, etc.
In a large pot heat the water, sugar and tea bags to a boil, stirring occassionally. Let cool to room temperature and remove tea bags (compost if you can!). Once cool, add liquid to half gallon jar. Top off jar with the previous batch of kombucha and then the SCOBY. Cover jar with muslin and secure with rubber band. Best if stored in a room 70-77 degrees and not in direct sunlight. Begin to taste test on day 5, batch should be ready in 5-10 days. As you continue to brew batches and your SCOBY's get stronger the fermentation time will decrease so be sure to keep up your tastings as you don't want the kombucha to be fermented for too long - it will have a vinegar like taste when it's past it's prime drinking time.
Once I got my kombucha skills going I was on a 6 day ferment then a 1 day second ferment. A second day ferment is when you remove the tea from the SCOBY and place in separate jars with lids. This is when you can flavor your kombucha with herbs, fruits, flavors, etc. My favorite add ins were fresh passionfruit, ginger + apple slices, beetroot, smashed blueberries... endless possibilites!
Your SCOBY will create babies so keep multiple batches going once they multiply.
*Note : Always use clean hands when handling SCOBY and kombucha liquids. Also always use a wooden spoon and store in a glass jar. I bought our SCOBY from a local health food store (Santos on Jonson St - Byron Bay) but it will reproduce quickly so once you have babies keep them in a jar with some 1 c of your kombucha until you can make your next batch or gift to a friend!