Kombucha tea is a traditional Russian drink that is made from fermenting plain black tea (or a combination of black and green tea) and sugar. It has been consumed for hundreds of years and, through extensive testing in Russia, proven to be an effective overall body detoxifier through the binding of the organic acids in the kombucha tea to all manner of toxins present in the body. Once tightly bound to the organic acids, the toxins are then rushed to the kidneys for excretion.
Russian communities that drink a lot of kombucha tea do not suffer from the cancer epidemics that plague folks who live near that country’s toxin spewing factories – even when the local flora and fauna are dying! Moreover, the Soviet Union used kombucha as one of its secret weapons in the training of its Olympic athletes – the athletes would drink up to 1 quart of kombucha per day while training to prevent lactic acid from accumulating in the muscles (lactic acid = sore muscles). So, athletes drinking this brew would be able to train harder and longer than athletes who did not drink kombucha.
The best thing about kombucha tea is that is is bubbly, delicious, and extremely hydrating. It very adequately replaces all the sports drinks and sodas that everyone seems addicted to today. My family has been drinking kombucha for almost 8 years now and it’s longstanding reputation for preventing gray hair is astonishing. Neither my husband or myself have any gray hair and we are both mid 40′s! It is simply “homemade soda” to my 3 children and it has proven itself over the years to be an extremely important facet of our overall wellness.
Many health food stores now sell raw kombucha tea. How raw it truly is, I do not know. I can tell you that store bought kombucha does not taste nearly as good as when you make it yourself. And, since it is so very easy and cheap to make, why not give it a go? Here’s what to do ..
Buy yourself a 1 gallon glass bowl to brew in, a box of plain black tea and green tea, and white sugar (yes, white sugar .. no worries as it all gets consumed during fermentation).
Boil 3 quarts of water.
Add 1 – 1 1/2 cups white sugar to the boiling water and dissolve
Continue to boil sugar water for 5 minutes
Remove pot from heat and add 3 black tea bags and 2 green tea bags.
Brew for 15 minutes.
Remove tea bags and let tea/sugar mixture cool to room temperature. Do not cool too long!
When mixture is just room temperature, add 6 oz of kombucha starter and 1 kombucha culture (order at www.laurelfarms.com and they will ship to you for about $35).
Cover with a white, prelaundered flour sack cloth (available at Walmart for $5 for a pack of 5) and attach with a large rubber band (available at Office Depot or Staples)
Leave in a quiet semi-lit room (no direct sunlight) for 7-10 days. When a new “baby” culture forms on the top of the brew and it is at least 1/8 ” thick, you may harvest the brew.
Store in clear glass only in the refrigerator. Repeat the process to brew as much as your family desires.
Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist