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Author: Julie

How to Brew Kombucha

How to Brew Kombucha

Brewing kombucha is such a simple process, and it isn’t as scary as it seems.  With many name-brand kombucha products running $3 or more per bottle, brewing your own kombucha is a no-brainer.  I absolutely love The Kombucha Shop’s products.  We ordered our first brew kit from them, and it really made brewing a dream.  Follow the steps below to take the scary out of brewing your own kombucha.

Brew Kombucha

Brew Kombucha

Ingredients:
S.C.O.B.Y.
1 cup of already brewed kombucha
3 tablespoons loose-leaf tea, or enough tea bags to brew one gallon of tea
*green and black teas are my favorite*
1 cup of sugar (organic pure cane tends the work the best)
Vinegar (for cleaning)
Filtered water

 

Materials:
1-gallon fermentation jar
1 stick-on temperature gauge
6 reused kombucha bottles, or other bottles
Container with a lid
Muslin cloth tea bag (disregard if using tea bags)
Pitcher
Rubber band
2 unbleached coffee filters or 1 reusable muslin organic cotton cloth piece (I do not recommend cheese cloth)
Large pot (for boiling water and steeping your tea)

   

Instructions:
1. Clean all surfaces and materials with vinegar and rinse with water (with the exception of any cloths or coffee filters)
2. Add your temperature gauge to the fermentation jar (make sure that you stick it closer to the bottom of the jar)
3. Clean your hands with vinegar, then rinse with water
4. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil
5. Add the 3 tablespoons of tea to your reusable tea bag, and add it to the water once it reaches a boil, then quickly move the water away from your heat source
6. Steep the tea for 5 minutes (unless otherwise instructed)
7. Add 1 cup of sugar, making sure that it fully dissolves
8. Add the sweetened tea to the 1-gallon fermentation jar
9. Fill the jar mostly full with cold, filtered water
10. Once the tea reaches a temperature between 68 °F and 88 °F, add your S.C.O.B.Y. and 1 cup of kombucha from the previous batch
11. Cover with your cloth or 2 coffee filters, and secure using the rubber band
12. Store in a warm, dark place with little movement for 2-4 weeks, depending on desired sweetness


Kombucha Brewing Dayhiked-5To Bottle Your Kombucha:

I usually like to brew my next batch of kombucha at the same time that I bottle my most recent batch
1. Repeat steps 1-8 above, only once your new kombucha reaches the appropriate temperature, add your current S.C.O.B.Y and 1 cup of current brew
*Keep in mind that your new batch will produce a second S.C.O.B.Y. It is perfectly fine to add both to your new batch, create two new batches instead of one, or consume your S.C.O.B.Y. (maybe add it to your smoothies?).  If you have a good friend maybe give it to him or her, but don’t waste it!  You grew it!
2. Pour your new batch of kombucha (sans the S.C.O.B.Y.) into your pitcher

3. From your pitcher, slowly pour your brew into your bottles
4. *Optional* add fruit or ginger while bottling for added flavor
5.  Secure lids tightly on the bottles
6. Store in a dark, warm place for up to 1 week (this will add the signature carbonation everyone loves, and further ferment your delicious brew)
7. Place in your refrigerator and enjoy whenever you need a boost!

 

Camping Monthly Budget

Camping Monthly Budget

For a few months, David and I have been using this budgeting template we created: Monthly Budget

I love this because we can set a savings goal and see how close we are to meeting it.  We can quickly and easily keep up with our transactions, confirmation numbers, and vendor information.  I no longer have to worry about my credit card transactions, I can quickly see if I really did spend $46 at Whole Foods on a random Wednesday (because if you are using it properly, ALL of your transactions will be right there).

budget

I just wanted to give you an idea of how we are planning on using this on the road.  For starters, we are going to try to create a template for every state (since we are planning on spending one or two months in each state).  After researching campgrounds,  fun stuff to do, and any hiking adventures, we will have an idea of how much we want to spend per state.  Our goal is to try to save money in some less expensive states.  This will give us a nice cushion in case we find an opportunity we can’t pass up, without having to dip into our hard-earned savings.

Below is a blank canvas for you to imagine your budgetary needs.  If you go to the template, you will notice that it only wants you to edit certain areas.  That is so you don’t override any formulas in place for that cell.  As you go through your monthly needs, try to think of things you don’t spend money on every month, but still add up, like renters insurance for your apartment, or car insurance if you don’t pay it monthly.  We created savings “buckets” with our bank for these categories, and pull them out each month like we are paying a bill.  The more realistic you are with your budget, the better off you will be.  We take whatever is left over and divide it as “fun” money, but rather than receiving one lump sum on the first of every month, we usually dole it out a week at a time while we are buying our groceries.  This allows us to pay for anything that might come up throughout the month.

Below is the template.  Please feel free to reach out to me at dayhiked@gmail.com if you would like me to customize this for you.  Colors, charts, fonts, etc.  I will gladly set you up with something more your style.  I love color, so I tried to incorporate that in to this template to make it a bit more fun, but I know that color isn’t for everyone.  I hope that you find this useful and that it helps you reach your own form of financial freedom! Monthly Budget