A Spot of Tea?
Last post I was struggling with making kombucha tea, some to drink, some to use for a bokashi starter. After putting my fermentation jug on top of the water heater, a SCOBY started forming. After checking acidity with pH strips, I determined that I needed more acid. I added 1/4 cup of vinegar and about 5 ounces of kombucha tea that was left over from a bottle that I had purchased. Here is what my SCOBY looked like yesterday when I brewed another batch and bottled.
Wonderful, isn’t it? I ended up bottling only one 16 ounce bottle of tea and used some of the rest for a starter for my next batch of tea, along with the SCOBY. I also used some to start a bokashi serum. Actually, I started three gallon milk jugs today.
What’s in the jugs? About 6 or 7 ounces of finished tea, a handful of red worm castings, and 2 – 3 ounces of blackstrap molasses, then filled nearly to the top with water. You see, I’ve been busy clearing off the garden, cleaning out the worm bins to bring them inside for the winter. I have been trying to get fermented newspapers, straw, and wheat bran dry and ready to use in my bokashi buckets. When I cleaned off one my raised beds, I sewed rye seed for a winter cover crop. Before I sewed the seed I washed it and kept the water. Today I flooded the rye rinse with milk.
I have two going at present. One was fermented with a rice/brewer’s yeast mixture. It is full and going through the two week waiting period before being used. The other bucket is being fermented using barley. So, this kombucha tea may not be used in a bokashi bucket this time. Two people just do not produce enough garbage.
Here’s where I got the idea.
Sunday, September 5, 2010
image from 2funadguyz, who will happily sell you a full-size poster. Probably best to put in your home rather than your wormery–just in case Verne really can read. (Though I’m pretty sure he can’t!)
Call this shortcut recipe FAIM, for False–or Faux, if you’re in that sort of mood–AIM. There’s nothing scientific about it, though I’m hoping others will be a bit more rigorous in their testing [yes, that’s a hint]. Short version: kombucha + vermicast + molasses and water as if making AEM, let ferment to completion once, then again to ideal pH, then used.
Longer, rambling version follows. You have been warned.
That’s the general idea. There are many variables. You do the calculations if you like, but it all seems to work and is soo easy!