Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Fermentation of foods is a lost art in the kitchen that needs to be brought back to modern-day cooking. For centuries women in the kitchen fermented almost all of their foods for preservation to last through winter. Fermentools seeks to encourage this art of fermentation in your kitchen.
There are so many different types of foods that you can ferment. From kombucha to sourdough and canning vegetables, fermenting is for more than just sauerkraut.
Fermentools sent me their starter kit in exchange for my honest review. I was so excited to receive this product because it actually was already on my wish list of things to get. I have been experimenting in my kitchen over the last year with fermenting different things. Because of gluten intolerance, I started making my own sourdough over two years ago. My starter is healthy and I have loved having sourdough in our kitchen.
I also have been making kombucha. However, my kombucha hasn’t been able to get bubbly so I wanted to see with their tools if it works better. I also have a mess when I make kombucha because it bubbles out when only used with the mason jar method. I had a SCOBY that was ready to go. Below you will find the recipe I used and my notes and thoughts on this kit.
The kit came with a jar weight that can hold down food in your mason jar and also a bubbler top that helps regulate the right amount of air. It also came with a special Himalayan salt for using when canning vegetables. Instructions are included in their basic starting kit and their blog has many different types of recipes for you to use as well.
Anyone who has a garden wants to be able to can their harvest. I have wanted to can for a long time and so I’m excited to try out canning and start to have a homestead pantry.
Living on the big island, our fruit trees are finally starting to produce in abundance this year. I’m planning on canning tangerines and vegetables from our surplus in the garden.
When making kombucha with their air topper, I did not have the wet mess on a towel underneath that I typically would, and the flavor turned out very nice. However, when pulling the jar out after the brew, the top struck the cabinet lightly and it cracked. So if you do buy the kit, please note it is very fragile.
HOW TO MAKE KOMBUCHA SCOBY
To make kombucha you will need a SCOBY. I found the easiest way to get a SCOBY is to grow one yourself. It is time-consuming, but with the right patience, it will come out just fine. Buy store-bought kombucha, and leave a little bit at the bottom of the bottle. Let it sit on your counter or in your cupboard for a few weeks. Over time a SCOBY will start to form. Once you have a small SCOBY you can then start your first kombucha batch. In time your SCOBY will grow bigger and start to produce more scoby’s. Unlike a sourdough starter, I have been amazed at how resilient the SCOBY is.
Kombucha is simply tea, sugar, and your SCOBY. You then can get fancy after the initial brewing batch and add flavorings for a second ferment. The average time for the first ferment batch is anywhere between 3 to 7 days. Flavor ferment is about 1-3 days.
- 1 64oz Mason Jar
- Ferment Kit Jar Topper (optional)
- 1 cup starter
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 4-5 tea bags black or green tea
- 7 cups water
- Boil 2 cups of water and steep tea bags of choice. Note, use non-flavored tea. Add sugar to tea to dissolve. Add remaining cold water to SCOBY and starter in 1/2 gallon(64oz) mason jar, then add steeped tea. You do not want to pour the hot tea in to the SCOBY mixture until the cool water is added first. Add ferment top or lid. If you are not using ferment top, you will want to have a towel under the jar as it releases liquid at times brewing. Place in cupboard or dark corner for 4-7 days depending on weather, and preferred brew taste. Longer time will yield a stronger taste, shorter time will produce a sweeter taste but not have as much of the live cultures that longer brew time will have. Drain out SCOBY into another jar with about 1/2 cup to 1 cup liquid. Then, add flavoring if you wish to do a final brew of 1-3 days. Or, bottle and let sit one day until putting in fridge to cool and enjoy! To get bubbly kombucha use popper top bottles. If only using mason jar method, kombucha will not have the bubbly consistency that it does at the store.
My kombucha did not turn out bubbly with the special top as I was hoping, but it did make clean up easier. And, like I said the top is fragile, so handle with special care. Next I am going to make some kale-broccoli-sauerkraut with the salt and heavy lid.
Check out what other crew members made with Fermentools.