Category Archives: Fermented Beverages

How to Save Your SCOBY from a Fruit Fly Infestation

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

save scoby from fruit flies
The fruit flies are really a challenge in my neck of the woods this year – much more so than in any years past that I remember.

Fruit flies love, and I mean looove, kombucha and its cousin made with honey, Jun teaalso called kombucha champagne. There’s something about the sweet and slightly sour smell and flavor that drives them absolutely nuts. Fruit flies also love to hang out or lay their eggs on the starter culture for these homebrews, popularly known by the acronym SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast).

If you brew either of these healthful and hydrating traditional beverages, you have no doubt noticed this too.

Half filled glasses of kombucha or Jun tea left anywhere in the house have the potential to cause the fruit flies to swarm as will leaving your homebrews uncovered even for a few minutes on the kitchen counter.

What do you do if you’ve only just discovered this and already have fruit flies doing laps in your fermentation vessel, or worse (ugh), fruit fly larvae that have taken up residence on your Jun tea or kombucha SCOBY?

Read more…


How to Make Jun Tea: Kombucha Champagne (Recipe plus Video!)

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

Jun Tea is Kombucha Champagne

I was gifted my very first Jun tea culture in recent months from a friend who told me that he seemed to digest it even better than the fermented drink known as kombucha.

I was excited to learn of a ferment made with honey and green tea instead of black tea and sugar, which is what you use when making kombucha.

The reason?

In 2001, shortly after I first began brewing kombucha, a Chinese friend who came to dinner told me her mother had made a very similar drink when she was a child growing up in Guangdong Province. The difference? Her mother made the ferment with green tea and honey.

Ever since that night, I’ve been intrigued by this mysterious ferment. Now I know it was very likely Jun tea.

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How to Make Orangina (Fermented Orange Juice)

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

Oranges are the most commonly grown fruit tree in the world. A hybrid of ancient cultivated origin, possibly the pomelo and the mandarin, the orange is widely grown in warm climes with Brazil and the United States (California and Florida) predominant.

The elementary school I attended in Dunedin, Florida happened to be located only a few miles from a Hood’s orange juice factory, now owned by Coca-Cola.

Many days, my classmates and I could smell the distinctive aroma of burning citrus peels from the belching smokestack. While the smell didn’t bother me too much, many of my classmates found it nauseating with some even choosing to stay indoors for recess on days when the wind was blowing in the school’s direction.

While burning citrus peel waste may not seem too problematic, the process of extracting the juice from the oranges in a factory setting definitely is.  Read more…


How to Make Starter for Homemade Soda (plus video!)

by Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

Starter for Homemade Soda

Investigation of the culinary practices of Ancestral Societies from around the world reveals that nearly all of them utilized various types of fermented foods and drinks to assist digestion, maintain a healthy balance of gut bacteria and keep immunity strong.

Of course, these cultures did not understand the science behind the benefits of fermented foods; they only observed anecdotally that by eating these foods regularly, vibrant health was more easily maintained and chronic disease avoided.

We now know that traditionally prepared fermented foods contain an abundance of beneficial bacteria, enzymes, and nutritional co-factors not present in the unfermented version of the same foods. Regular consumption of traditionally fermented foods makes it far more likely that you and your family will sail through flu season with nothing more than a mild sniffle or a brief fever if even that!

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