In How to Make Kombucha Part 2 we get into flavoring and the second ferment where we will bottle the brew and get some carbonation.
In this batch, I’m using ginger to make a ginger ale flavored brew. I’m doing this because when I went to the store to get the starter tea, I found ginger flavored kombucha and found it to be mighty tasty. I’ve also seen several posts stating that ginger has a lot of health benefits for you, so I figured it seems to be a win-win.
As this is my first go-round with flavoring kombucha, I figured I’d try several different potencies of flavoring. The first thing I did was to grate the ginger with a cheese grater.
In the Bottle
In two bottles, I added 1/8 tsp and in two other bottles I added ¼ tsp of ginger. I used a funnel and just added the ginger right into the bottle itself.
The bottles I’m using are swing top glass bottles. They are intended for home beer brewing, but work great for kombucha. Mine have white lids and I wrote numbers on the lids. Then I wrote on a piece of paper the number and ingredients so I could keep track of how much flavor was in each. After I get the recipe I like down, then I won’t need to write numbers on each lid.
I then added kombucha using the funnel. I did this in the kitchen sink because I always seem to spill a little and in the sink, it is much easier to clean up.
I fill the bottles up leaving about an inch or so of head space. Then I cap it and store it at room temperature.
I like the swing top bottles because they allow me to check and make sure that I don’t build up too much CO2 in the bottle. If too much builds up, it could potentially shatter the bottle. By the way, it is the CO2 that gives the drink the carbonation. I will check a bottle every couple of days by opening the lid and making sure it doesn’t shoot the lid off like Champaign. I want a little pressure, that’s all.
Every couple of days, pull a bottle out and give it a taste test. It will get more and more acidic as time goes on. Taste is very subjective, so you need to find what you like and how long to brew it. I have done as few as five days and as many as ten days.
Stop the Ferment
As soon as the brew has the taste you want, stop the ferment. This is done by moving the bottles to the refrigerator. This really doesn’t stop the ferment, but slows it to the point that it is almost stopped.
Link to Part 1
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