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Old 07-26-2009, 12:26 PM   #1111
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Any ideas on whether an enameled pot is ok to make the sweet tea in? I have a big one that will hold my gallon of water and let me use the rest for helping cool without going back and forth between pot and jug to mix tea/water before adding it to the KT.

I made DS another strawberry KT in an empty DaVinci bottle- gotta wait a few more days on the bananas to get -y ripe. He still hates the smell, but really liked the taste of the strawberry. Go figure! I have a bottle of elderberry concentrate coming and really want to try it. Never tasted elderberry, but if it is as good as blackberries, then I will probably like it a lot.

The 5 gal. scoby is looking more like a scoby now, and not the sickly edged thing there was last week. And the hotel! I shake it a little to keep the top moist and it is just going to town!
Geez- don'cha love science!
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Old 07-27-2009, 05:51 AM   #1112
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An enamel pot should be just fine. You are just making the sweet tea in it not brewing. But even if, I was told an uncracked unscratched enamel pot could also brew, but i didn't want to take a chance. You are just heating the water enought to make tea, it's not like it is staying in the pot or leaching anything. Enamel is fine.

I'm so excited to be brewing again. I wish it were ready now! I need to drop by the bottle shop and see if they are still in business. I need my gaskets for the swing top I bought and to get some smaller bottles.

HH finally has 8.5oz bottles back in stock. but I don't know if I want to invest in a dozen at $36 bucks, but the shipping is free. . . The local guy has 16 oz bottles. i like the idea of smaller, but it would take up more space and I don't have racks to store them on. sigh I wish I had a builder man to make a mad scientist shelf for me!
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Old 07-27-2009, 07:27 AM   #1113
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I boil up my water in a large non-stick metal pot and toss the tea bags in there to brew. Add sugar and let it set (sometimes I make the tea really concentrated and I add ice if I want to cool it in a hurry) but sometimes I let it set in the pot overnight before I add it to my brewing jars. Never had a problem using a metal pot.
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Old 07-27-2009, 04:53 PM   #1114
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I use my ss dutch oven, but doing up a whole gallon of water takes it to the rim- not room for even the tea ball! Thought I'd use the enameled pot 'cause of the room, then I can add the extra water to mix before it goes into the brewer.
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Old 07-27-2009, 08:39 PM   #1115
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Originally Posted by pepperette View Post
I use my ss dutch oven, but doing up a whole gallon of water takes it to the rim- not room for even the tea ball! Thought I'd use the enameled pot 'cause of the room, then I can add the extra water to mix before it goes into the brewer.
My big old pot isn't big enough either, but I make the tea super concentrated and when I transfer it to a pitcher to pour it into my brew, that's when I water it down a bit.
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:48 AM   #1116
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I can't believe how giddy I am getting over my scoby/tea. Yesterday I decided to cut up the giant scoby that Angie sent me. It already had a new scoby (very thin) floating on top!! I cut the big one in half and started a new brew. I also tasted the tea from the original batch and it's still a little too sweet for me, but I don't think it will be long before it's ready. So now I have a batch brewing that I started with a store bought bottle (and has a very thin scoby floating on top already), the 1 gal. batch started from the scoby from Angie, and now a new batch started.

I'm trying to document what I'm doing to keep track of dates, ing. etc., but I admit I have always been someone who cooks without measuring, adding ing. as I see fit. So I am trying to keep track of how much tea and what kind of tea I am using. Luckily my DD is a tea FREAK and has lots of very nice loose tea I am stealing (but that's okay, cuz I'm sure she'll be drinking lots of my KT).

Anyway, just checking in because I'm so excited!!
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:59 AM   #1117
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just a warning girls....

blueberry kombucha is greying my teeth! yikes!
cranberry/ginger for me from now on!
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Old 07-28-2009, 08:02 AM   #1118
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Quote:
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just a warning girls....

blueberry kombucha is greying my teeth! yikes!
cranberry/ginger for me from now on!
Oh no! We've been using grape concentrate as a flavoring and haven't detected any staining... but now I'll definitely be on the lookout.

Surprisingly, some of my favorite 2nd ferments have been sans any flavorings at all...
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Old 07-28-2009, 10:56 AM   #1119
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Pepperette, Don't bother boiling a whole gallon. Just boil half a gallon or a quart of water. add all your teabags as if for a gallon and add all your sugar. Let the teabags steep a bit longer and then all you have to do is measure out the extra water to make it a full gallon to add to the brew. The extra water won't be hot so you won't have to wait so long for it to cool. i have a 2 quart pot that was supposed to be three(mislabeled) anyway I used to brew 2 quarts of water with the sugar and tea, and just add the third quart of water when I poured it into the brewer, but it's much easier for me to do just one quart of water.

Fawn, sorry to hear about the blueberry smile!
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Old 07-28-2009, 05:18 PM   #1120
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just a warning girls....

blueberry kombucha is greying my teeth! yikes!
cranberry/ginger for me from now on!




J/K
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Old 07-28-2009, 06:37 PM   #1121
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DSs new brews:

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Old 07-28-2009, 07:10 PM   #1122
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Holy cats Pepperette... is that banana in those bottles??? Amazing!
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Old 07-28-2009, 07:17 PM   #1123
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The pink brew is strawberry, which we put to chill tonight. It headed up like crazy as we opened it for tasting! The green bottle is banana. It will sit for 2 days before he tastes it. I may have created a KT monster if he gets flavors and strengths he likes!
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Old 07-29-2009, 04:05 AM   #1124
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I love Kombucha, but had to give it up when I got diabetes. Just curious how everone fits it in a low carb diet.
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:47 AM   #1125
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I love Kombucha, but had to give it up when I got diabetes. Just curious how everone fits it in a low carb diet.
Did you give it up because when you drank it it affected your health negatively?

or because it is made with sugar to start? Can you still eat fruit like apples or pineapple? What about yogurt?

I'm curious because I'm under the impression that Kombucha, being a fermented product, has less sugar than say the same volume of sweet tea ( which of course you wouldn't be drinking anyway) same way that yogurt doesn't have as much lactose sugar as plain milk. Also, that the sugar left in the brew is fructose which is the same as fruit sugar and at least GT's information says its about, what, 8 g of sugar per serving(?), and most fruit have much more fructose than that in a serving.

BTW, I really am curious what events lead you to decide to drop it. My BFs LilBro is Diabetic, and I wanted to recommend to him to try Kombucha. If it caused you a blood sugar rise or other complications, it would be helpful to me to know so I can warn him to be aware.
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:16 PM   #1126
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I am T2, and was on Insulin, and as long as I do LC and not eat regular cakes, candy, etc., I feel what minute sugar may linger in the kombucha is better for me than the Aspartame in my sodas that was killing my feet and legs nightly. I also 2nd ferment with juice concentrates- the newest tonight is black elderberry. I have done blueberry, cranberry and pomegranate for me, strawberry and banana( not done w/2nd ferment yet) for DS (not diabetic).


My Scoby hotel:
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Old 07-30-2009, 04:41 PM   #1127
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95% of the sugar is supposed to be converted - I'm sensitive to sugar and have never had a reaction (even while drinking half gallon a day) to KT. Although I do brew it extra long. I feel fairly confident that the sugar level and caffeine is low. I could be delusional also, wish we had someone who drank it and checked blood sugar.

I'm still at step sis' - I'm hoping to be home by Monday. I need the rest lol.
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Old 07-30-2009, 04:54 PM   #1128
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I'm hypoglycemic and it doesn't do anything noticeable to my blood sugar - I rely mainly on blood sugar drop symptoms and I get none of that with KT. Coffee is my worst enemy when it comes to blood sugar spikes and drops. I get no reaction with KT as I get with coffee (so caffeine must be minimal)

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Old 07-31-2009, 06:02 AM   #1129
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Has anyone figured out cals? I know it must depend on if you use juice or not, but with just tea, sugar, scoby can you estimate an 8 oz. serving?
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Old 07-31-2009, 06:58 AM   #1130
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Aw man, I think I posted that back months ago. and I forgot! But I think I at least came up with about 4-8 g of sugar per serving, so it can't be that much in calories since there is no protein or fat.
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Old 07-31-2009, 07:54 AM   #1131
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Has anyone figured out cals? I know it must depend on if you use juice or not, but with just tea, sugar, scoby can you estimate an 8 oz. serving?
From a GT Synergy bottle
Gingerade: 30 cal/8 oz serving, 7g carbs (debatable, there may be something like the yogurt exception going on and it might be less)
Strawberry: 35 cal/8oz serving, 8g carbs

I'll go with this since I would imagine I am doing basically the same thing they are...

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Old 07-31-2009, 08:29 AM   #1132
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Aw man, I think I posted that back months ago. and I forgot! But I think I at least came up with about 4-8 g of sugar per serving, so it can't be that much in calories since there is no protein or fat.
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From a GT Synergy bottle
Gingerade: 30 cal/8 oz serving, 7g carbs (debatable, there may be something like the yogurt exception going on and it might be less)
Strawberry: 35 cal/8oz serving, 8g carbs

I'll go with this since I would imagine I am doing basically the same thing they are...

Thanks, that's what I was hoping!!
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Old 08-02-2009, 12:21 AM   #1133
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Just when you think nothing is happening

So, as you know, about 2 weeks ago, I started from scratch, again - my former scobys were getting just too strong and KT was not quite right.

I started 2 brews (didn't have enough baby scoby to start the 3rd) I will do that this week, though. One jar is going like gangbusters. I bottled it on Wed or Thurs. The other one, just had that baby scoby floating around, but no film forming on the top. But the brew was a bit carbonated. Surely that meant something was happening, but wasn't all that flavorful - not like the other one. So I thought ok a couple more days and we'll see, maybe it was dud scoby and I would start this jar over again - nothing gained, nothing lost (well except 2 weeks) This evening I checked on it again - looked like there were more bubbles forming on the top. Tasted it and it is a bit more tasty and definitely carbonated AND more importantly there is a little film forming. So, all I can say is give it time. Expect it when you least expect it.

I started these two jars at the same time and I will probably be bottling a second batch from one jar at the same time I am bottling for the first time from the other.
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Old 08-02-2009, 07:08 AM   #1134
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Well, It happened a gain. I waited to long and Seasonal Sun Tea Jars have Bit the Dust.

I don't understand how Folks decide what is seasonally summer. I mean it's still hitting the nineties hear, plus I drink beverages all year long. What if they decide that filter pitchers are only for spring? or mugs are only for winter. Heck I don't understand who decided that people need glass jars with spigots only in the freakin' summer! And WHY DO WE NEED CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS IN JULY!!!!

Anyway, I was gonna get a jar to put in BF's abomination, but I guess I missed my chance. This boy pretty much refuses to take responsibility for this grape juice Kombucha that only he likes. I won't drink it. He expects me to make his while I'm trying to get my own brew under control. Normally I wouldn't mind but I feel stupid trying to perfect someone elses fake brew while I can't even enjoy my brew. I feel I need to focus my attention on getting the real deal running properly.

I bought 8 16oz swing top bottles from the local bottle guy and told him I was gonna keep 'em secret from BF cause he'd want me to put the abomination in them. Sure enough, he popped by, saw the bottles and said "ooooohhh, you can make me 20 bottles of the stuff" NO WAY those are for me! I'm feeling selfish cause I haven't have any proper Kombucha in like two months. The one good bottle I gave away as a birthday gift and now friends Mom wants to trade a scoby for some kefir grains. Sounds like a good deal!

I woke up to the house smelling like boocha, so I've brushed my teeth real good so I can get a good clean taste of my first new restarted continuous. Since I poured off 16 oz last time, I added 3 cups of sweet tea from concentrate, to try to increase the volume, so I had to wait a bit longer than 3 days. I think I'll keep drawing of a bit and adding more than I draw off till I get a good volume in the tank. Right now it's only about a gallon. and one bottle 2Fing.
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Old 08-02-2009, 07:35 AM   #1135
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Jo and Metqa...

Good going! Jo, you're so right about "expect it when you least expect it."

Metqa, guard those bottles! Seriously they are worth their weight in gold. I think I would definitely find a way to end the grape abomination, LOL. If you add some grape concentrate to your 2nd ferments, I bet your BF would NEVER know the difference. Except maybe to say how awesome this batch tasted! Focus on your continuous brew and get that going - you deserve some great KT!
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Old 08-02-2009, 08:18 AM   #1136
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My brews are going great! I poured out my first bottle of KT and shared it with DD and she said it tasted great, just like the ones she buys for $3-4!! Woo-hoo! I think she was impressed with her ol' Mom!

Jo-if you don't mind me asking...a few (or more) pages back you had mentioned that you were giving Kombucha a try to replace drinking wine in the evening. How's that going for you? I, too, am hoping to cut WAY back on wine and replace with Kombucha. I just like a special drink (other than water or coffee) Something with a kick and something not sweet. Now that I got a couple of batches brewing and ready to drink I hope this will work for me!
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Old 08-02-2009, 10:01 AM   #1137
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J4, I haven't really drunk wine for months now. At the beginning, I was not drinking the kombucha; I just stopped drinking wine. I don't know if I was enjoying the wine all that much anyway - it was just habit. Then I found kombucha and it's been great. I take it to parties and it looks like I am having a "drink" - looks more like beer than wine, but it is more special than just drinking water (sparkling or not) or soda. Although I do drink it during the days sometimes, I do find it special in the evening like having a glass of wine.
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Old 08-02-2009, 03:22 PM   #1138
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Did this up this past Wed. to see how it would do. Just under a full 4 days, and look at the scoby! That is the black elderberry flavor, and WOW does it smell good! Bottled it and waiting for it to chill. MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM


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Old 08-03-2009, 06:00 AM   #1139
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Hee-hee, Pepperette! I love what we get excited over! Beautiful scobies!

So when I continuous brew and add in the tea it makes the floating scoby sink, or go kinda sideways. Then a new scoby forms on top (pretty quickly). Is this okay? Eventually I'll have multiple thin scobies floating all around the tea. Should I take some out?
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Old 08-03-2009, 07:57 AM   #1140
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Yup scobys go wonky - nothing to worry about. No need to thin them out unless you really want to.
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