Friday, January 18, 2019

Kombucha Brewer back in action...Part 1 and 2

Part 1 - My Kombucha Brewer has been in storage for a few years. I had a bottle of beautiful Kombucha at my neighbours last month, and I gave my head a shake. Why have I NOT been making this. He bottles up the Kombucha. He muddles fresh fruit and puts about a tablespoon in each bottle. He then does the secondary fermentation and gets a lot of fizz doing it that way, his blueberry was exemplary. I went over today and had a smell of his not quite ready blackberry kombucha. OMGosh. 

My old Scoby hotel was dead. I mean dead. So I had to throw that out. I went and bought a bottle of unflavoured Kombucha to start a Scoby from scratch. It is formed and liquid is fizzy. 

Part 2 - The SCOBY formed beautifully, and Kombucha was delicious, and then I broke my shoulder in August. I drank what was ready, but I was incapable of taking care of the brewer. So it has languished until now. Today I drained the now vinegary Kombucha, leaving about a cup of Kombucha and my now huge SCOBY. I made some lovely new organic green tea, added sugar and water and it is now ready to age for a week or so. I am so anxious to have some of my own lovely Kombucha. Life returning to normal. 

Look at how lovely this homemade SCOBY is. This time I didn’t get fancy. 
I used a bottle of this plain unflavoured GTS Kombucha, Green Tea and Cane Sugar. That’s it. 

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

My Kombucha continuous brewer has been set up!!

I set up the Continuous Brewer for my Kombucha. I put the two jars that I had on the go into the brewer. I worked out the ratio for the tea to water for the 2 1/2 gallon brewer. I'm good to go. I feel like an alchemist. 

DONE!!! My brewer set up. Isn't it wonderful. To the left is my plantain infusion and SCOBY hotel. That is a jar of SCOBY's and liquid so you have SCOBY's in reserve in case a batch molds etc. And of course to give to people starting out.

I am a research kinda girl. I have been reading about Kombucha and making batches for several months. I made my original SCOBY from a bottle of GT Kombucha unflavoured. I lost two batches to mold. Rather than getting totally disillusioned and quitting. I set about to figure it out. The only thing different from previous batches was a box of green tea I was using. I whipped up a batch with black tea and then a green/black combo. I got rid of the old box of green tea and substituted a new type. It worked just fine. I now wonder if the tea itself could have contained mold spores. My cleaning was impeccable, so I knew it wasn't that. So Kombucha back on track and I had two half gallon jars on the go at all times. I did the second fermentation and managed to get fizz. Then I started adding raw ginger and I was hooked. 
So back to research. I started reading about the continuous brewing system. The Kombucha goes into a large vessel with a spigot down low. You decant out your litre for the week and top up the brew. I bought a 2 1/2 gallon porcelain crock with green stripes. So when you take out the litre, there is so much Kombucha left when you top it up, it only takes a couple days for the Kombucha to be ready instead of ten+. I set my system up last night. 

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Making Water Kefir for the first time.

I recently spent some time with a lovely couple at their farm. Nicole gave me my first taste of Kefir. It was yummy. It tasted a lot like Kombucha, but a softer taste. It only takes a few days to make instead of the week plus that Kombucha takes, I plan to keep both on the go. I like the stronger taste of Kombucha but I love the speed of Kefir. Nicole gave me the grains I need to start my own first batch. I added some organic dried blueberries. Batch on!! Isn't it lovely.

The bottled Kefir. I'm doing a second ferment. I added two oz of Pineapple Juice and sealed. I am hoping for fizz. I love fizz.

Oops, just read that Pineapple juice is too acidic for Kefir. It has white foam all over the top now and is bubbling, tiny little bubbles from the sludge at the bottom. We will see what happens!

It was perfect and a bit fizzy. Really nice.

Friday, August 30, 2013

The Kombucha is almost ready. And looking good this time!!

I tasted the Kombucha I made on about August 12. It is finally losing the sweetness. I don't like mine too sweet. I'm think about another week. Interesting that this batch is working again. I am wondering if the problem I had using green tea and both batches molding, may be that the green tea contained mold spores? This batch made with black tea is fine. Can't wait. I'm going to try ginger!! I love GT'S Organic Raw Kombucha Gingerade.

A healthy non molding Scoby.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Pumpkin Flax Muffins. God I just love them.

I just made yet another batch of Pumpkin Bran Flax Muffins {recipe at the right}. Last week, I was hankering for a flax muffin so I bought a four pack of the organic bran flax muffins that I used to buy at my fave supermarket. I like to have one for lunch at the store. They are good enough....but I hadn't had any since I started making my own. was quite disappointing.....yet affirming. Disappointing cuz they aren't as good as mine, not by a long shot, but affirming because it made me realize, I KNOW WHAT I'M DOING!! Yummmm. 

I am completely addicted to these muffins with a topping of Earth Balance Organic Coconut Flavour Spread. OMG. It's like candy to me.

This is me. This is what I look like when I come in out of the garden. This is my teeny tiny kitchen. What you see here, is pretty much the whole kitchen. You can see my favorite kitchen tools in this picture. My Kitchenaid in the corner. I've had it for, I dunno, about 15 years? Beside it is my Nespresso machine. Not really a kitchen tool, rather more of an obsession. Beside it is my Vitamix. Truly the most incredible thing if you follow a pretty healthy diet. I even make my own almond milk!! 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

An update to "Keeping Hens Should be Everyone's Right"

I have been writing Sidney council for nearly two years trying to get the bylaw changed to allow a few hens on residential lots. About a year ago, I was told that they were working on wording of a new bylaw. This week, unbeknownst to me, there was a council meeting to discuss it and a vote. Six people showed up against the new bylaw and none of us who wanted the new bylaw. It was reported that there was a single request for the change. There are a great many more of us. We thought the town was going forward with a new bylaw, so there was no need for a letter writing campaign. Because we weren't told, and as I didn't realize there was any debate over it, I wasn't watching for a meeting. I have been emailing the bylaw officers regularly for updates. I should have been told about the meeting and vote. I am extremely disappointed that this was dealt with in what I consider a a sneaky fashion. I would ask that anyone who lives in Sidney and would have liked to see a new bylaw, please let them know how we feel about not being given a chance to be at the meeting. 

Town of Sidney...I am really disappointed by your obvious bias and stacking the meeting in your favour.

Here is the post I wrote on my food blog outlining my plea to council.

Friday, July 05, 2013

Salad season is my favourite time of year.

Oh, how I love salad season.

I am so happy it is fresh salad time again. I'm quite lost when I have to eat greens from somewhere other than my own yard. I am so thankful I found the gardener hidden within.

Here is what I foraged for tonight. We had a lovely bed of greens, with warmed goat cheese and ahi. The greens were various lettuce, beet leaves, kale, snowpeas, borage and nasturtium flowers and lots of Sungold tomatoes. The tomatoes are the only hybrid I grow. They are like tomato candy!!