If you’ve never made kombucha at home, it’s pretty simple. Its (almost) a set it and forget it type of drink, except you need to remember it about 2 weeks after you start your brew. Kombucha is basically black tea, sugar and your SCOBY which is short for symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast and it’s mandatory to ferment kombucha. I bought my SCOBY and basic equipment from The Kombucha Shop https://www.thekombuchashop.com/ and they also have a step by step instruction card they send for your Kombucha!
You can use any black tea for your tea batch, but in this recipe I used Oolong tea. Its one of my go-to tea’s when I brew kombucha. I’m always experimenting with new flavors of homemade kombucha and this Elderberry & Ginger flavor is so fresh and tasty! It uses Elderberry Syrup and grated fresh ginger added for the second fermentation. The second fermentation is what carbonates your kombucha and only needs a few days to achieve that. There are a couple techniques to prevent over-carbonation on your kombucha which causes explosions when you go to open the bottle. You can either “burp” you kombucha bottles once a day during the second fermentation or you can put them in a kitchen cabinet until the second fermentation is done. I usually burp my bottles so I can hear if they actually need to be burped or not. During the summer and warmer weather I definitely need to burp them during the second fermentation, but during colder months, I’ve found I don’t need to burp or put them in cabinets because the temperature causes them to not become over carbonated. If you’re looking for other flavors of kombucha to try, check out my Strawberry Tamarind Kombucha.
Elderberry & Ginger Kombucha
- 6 bags Oolong Tea (or any black tea)
- 2 cup cane sugar
- 8 cups water
- Approximately ¼ cup Elderberry Syrup
- 6 tbsp grated ginger
Makes 6 bottles of Kombucha
- Simmer 4 cups of water. Turn off heat, add all the tea bags and let steep for 6-8 minutes.
- Remove the tea bags and stir in the sugar until its dissolved. Add it to your brew bottle and top off with the remaining 4 cups water. If it is between 68-86°F, add your SCOBY & some of your old brew and let it do its thing for at least 14 days!
- After 14 days, its ready for the second fermentation. Add 8 tbsp of Elderberry Syrup and 1 tbsp of ginger to each bottle. Strain the tea brew into each bottle about 80% full. (Do not to overfill! – This can contribute to over carbonation.)
- Keep your bottles at room temperature for 2-3 days and then pop into the fridge to enjoy! Read paragraph above about preventing over carbonation during second fermentation.
Feel free to leave any questions or comments below about brewing Kombucha at home! If you make this recipe, I’d love to hear what you think of the flavor and don’t forget to tag me on instagram @theladlebearer.