How I Make Kambucha Tea
If you do some web searches on "kambucha" you should find a lot of information about it, so I won't duplicate
what you can already find. I'll just list my recipe and state my two cents.
In a clean pot, I boil about 3.5 quarts of water. Then I turn off the heat and add 1 cup of sugar, about 3
tablespoons of green tea (usually gunpowder), and 3 tablespoons of black tea (often Lipton tea bags). I wait
for this to cool until it is warm, but not hot to the touch.
Next, I strain this mixture into a very wide mouthed tinted jar that can hold at least a gallon. I picked it up at
Ikea. The main thing is just to have a large, wide mouthed jar. I add in about a cup of already made kambucha
tea to increase the acidity. Finally, I add in the kambucha "mushroom" and cover with a cotton cloth.
How long you ferment the mixture depends on the temperature. For me, this means that the tea cooks faster in
the summer. It will usually be ready in about 6-10 days, although I sometimes leave it longer for a sharp,
vinegar tasting batch.
I've tried making it with ginger tea. This works but I don't like it as much.
I will supply a starter mushroom to anyone willing to pick it up. I currently live in downtown Chicago.
Is Kambucha a panacea? Does it live up to all of the hype you will find on the web about it? No, of course
not. I think most of its benefits are similar to those of drinking a small amount of apple cider vinegar in the
morning. So, I take a few ounces in the morning mixed with water and believe I derive mildly improved
digestive benefits. I'm not ruling out additional benefits, but I haven't seen any convincing evidence of them.
Dear Mr. Feldman:
I am the Assistant Director of the California Poison Control System - San Diego
I enjoy listening to your program, however, I was concerned with the information
you recently provided regarding Kombucha mushrooms. Kombucha is not really
a mushroom but yeast and bacteria. There have been reports of severe toxicity
associated with Kombucha. I have included the references from the Journal of the
American Medical Association and from the Annals of Emergency Medicine.
1. Unexplained severe illness possibly associated with
consumption of Kombucha tea--Iowa, 1995. From the Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention. Journal: Jama, 1996 Jan 10,
2. Kombucha "mushroom" hepatotoxicity [letter]. Journal: Annals
of Emergency Medicine, 1995 Nov, 26(5):660-1.
Your program should provide this additional information and possible health risks.
This illustrates the problem of obtaining medical information from the Internet,
which has much misinformation on it. Thank you.
Dr. Sean Nordt
California Poison Control System
San Diego Division
University of California, San Diego
Regarding the Tea-Mushroom which equals Kambucha it is a
yeast bacteria mixture. There is a nice article on it in The
Mycologist 7(1): 12-13. 1993, by Kappel & Anken. The
organisms are: Bacterium xylinum, B. xylinoides. B.
gluconium, and B. ketogenum, and the yeasts Saccharomyces
ludwigii, Schizosaccharomyces pombe and Pichia fermentans.
DRINK IN GOOD HEALTH I GUESS!