All About Kombucha

Kombucha sections

Kombucha Introduction

The term of kombucha means simultaneously the ferment and also the drink that this ferment provides.

The ferment has the shape of a disk, and this is what it was named “kombucha disk”: it actually looks like a “mother of vinegar”, a gelatinous membrane that results from the fermentation of bacteria existing in the vinegar.

When mixed with cold sweet tea, the disk produces a beverage that is called “kombucha drink”. This is the reason why the fungus was nicknamed “mushroom tea”, but even if it’s commonly known as a “fungus” or “fungi”, it is not a real one.

Kombucha Disc
Kombucha Disc

There is an impressive number of names for the kombucha and for the beverage obtained from its fermentation. Among the most known we can find the followings:

  • Flower of Russia
  • Russian mother
  • Russian tea vinegar
  • Fungus of Japan
  • Japan sponge
  • Magic Fungus
  • Long life fungus
  • Life champagne
  • Teepilz
  • Gift of Life
  • Indian mushroom
  • Etc.
Kombucha Disc
Kombucha Disc

History of Kombucha

The history of the use of this “mushroom” dates back some two thousand years ago. It is difficult to say exactly where it appeared for the first time. The fungus would be native to Asia and would arrived in Europe via Mongolia and Russia.

Acclaimed folk remedy in the Russian countryside, the production and the consumption of the beverage obtained from kombucha was considered a sacred ritual, providing both well-being and contributing to a balanced diet.

Kombucha Disc
Kombucha Disc

In the twenties, scientists have begun to take an interest in its properties, but their studies were suspended when the World War II broke out. Because of the war, the kombucha beverage almost disappeared in Europe, due to the lack of sugar and tea, which are essential for its preparation. Thereafter, kombucha has become popular again, and in the sixties and seventies we found it in Germany and Austria, introduced here from the Eastern Europe. This is also mainly in Germany in the seventies that were performed testing and medical researches on its the effects.

Due to the success experienced by this beverage, kombucha has been named, among others, “elixir of life”, “miracle fungus” and even “magical fungus”.

Kombucha in Cosmetics

Kombucha Disc
Kombucha Disc

As amazing as it may seem, the disks can be used in external applications, as an ointment.

Thanks to your kombucha culture, as soon as you have a new disc that grew up on the surface, you can reduce it in cream, by using a kitchen mixer: the cream thus obtained is to apply on the face, for a duration of 20 minutes. Take advantage of this time to lie down and relax.

After 20 minutes, simply rinse the cream with hot water.

Thanks to its high concentration of active yeasts, the resulting cream is also an excellent moisturizer!

Equipment needed to prepare Kombucha

Here’s what you need in order to prepare your kombucha-based beverage:

  • a disk;
  • non sparkling bottled water (tap water is also appropriate, provided that it is filtered);
  • sugar;
  • tea (leaf tea or bags).
Kombucha Disc
Kombucha Disc

Regarding the kitchen tools, you will need the followings:

  • a glass jar (preferably);
  • a fine or medium mesh plastic strainer (if you use leaf tea);
  • a muslin and
  • an elastic.

You will find the basic recipe for the preparation of your kombucha tea in our recipes section.

Hygiene compliance

Hygiene compliance is essential while preparing kefir (water kefir, milk kefir) and kombucha beverages; therefore, it is very important to always pay attention to hygiene when it comes to kombucha.

If you notice any unusual smells and/or colors, blisters or if mold appears on your strains, you must not drink the beverage that you obtained. A more or less strong vinegar smell, depending on the fermentation time, is quite normal.

Always use kitchen tools easy to maintain (glass jar, fine mesh plastic strainer).

Kombucha Fungus
Kombucha Fungus

In order to wash the kitchen tools, there is no need to sterilize them; by cons, always use hot water and dish detergent preferably made of natural products, and take care not to burn yourself when doing this.

For the jar, you can use glass jars for vegetables for e.g., that you can easily find on the market. You must carefully clean the jar before use, as described here.

Mesh plastic strainers and plastic little spoons being affordable, the best is to buy them new and used them only for your probiotic cultures.

Once utensils cleaned as described, you have to let them cool completely, as the strainers can’t withstand high temperatures. Only after that you can start a new culture.

Tips and Tricks

In order to successfully make your own beverages, here are some helpful tips:

  • avoid putting the strain in contact with the metal, as the acids of the infusion react with it;
  • the strains are not to be eaten: they serve only to seed your drink;
  • always respect the recommended dosage: a disk, about 70 grams of sugar per 1 liter of water and 5 grams of tea;
  • sweet tea should be pre-cooled before seeding the kombucha;
  • use bottled still water or filtered tap water using Brita-type pitchers or devices;
  • the fermentation lasts about one week (six to nine days, depending on the outdoor temperature). If allowed to ferment longer, the beverage could be quicky very acid;
  • the beverage should taste not too acidic and be slightly sweet;
  • hygiene compliance is essential: the container must be thoroughly washed after each culture. The strainer must be rinsed after each culture in cold water, and immediately put back in sweet, cooled tea;
  • if filaments occur during the preparation of the beverage, when rinsing the disk such waste can be filtered through a plastic strainer;
  • once the beverage obtained, filter it and put it in bottles, taking care to leave a little space for the air;
  • the drink is to be kept in the refrigerator, otherwise the fermentation continuous and it will have a sour taste;
  • please pay attention to the gas excess that can cause the explosion of the container, especially if it is about sealed, glass bottles; you must leave the gas excess occasionally escape.

How to store Kombucha strains?

The best thing to do in your absence is to put the strains in the refrigerator in about 250 ml of its own liquid, and make sure to leave some space so it can have enough air to breathe. It then falls into “hibernation” and can be kept like that for about three months.

Otherwise, if you leave it in the open air at a temperature of about 18° C / 64 F (so not very high), the fermentation process continues, as long as the kombucha has enough sugar and oxygen.

This is why the best way to keep it during your absence is the refrigerator.

Where you can buy Kombucha?

You can buy kombucha disks right here below or you can buy it on our online shop with other kefir or kombucha products in combinations at promotion.

We have hundreds of satisfied customers all over the world. You can find all their reviews on our main website in France here

Thank you for visiting our kombucha page and we hope you found everything you were looking for.