On hot days, nothing satisfies thirst like a cold, bubbly beverage. This Ginger Grapefruit Kombucha just so happens to fit the bill perfectly. It’s light, citrus-y, and refreshing. And of course nourishing and probiotic — because it’s kombucha.
What Is Kombucha?
Kombucha is a fermented, probiotic beverage that has been brewed for thousands of years. In ancient Mongolia, it was the drink of warriors who believed it gave them strength and vitality. In ancient China and up until the more modern Chinese Cultural Revolution, it was brewed as an elixir of longevity. And as it traveled the Silk Road into Russia and Eastern Europe, there are even stories that the elderly women who had consumed kombucha regularly throughout their lives showed significantly less radiation damage in the Chernobyl nuclear fallout.
Whether these legends are true or just grand stories of lore, suffice it to say, kombucha has been brewed throughout history as a cleansing tonic and boon of good health.
In my house, we brew it just because we like it. Our toddler and preschooler can’t get enough of it and my husband likes it to pack it along in his work lunch — if I can keep it in stock.
What Can You Do With Kombucha?
Kombucha is incredibly versatile. Plain kombucha is a fabulous blank canvas, especially in summertime, to add your own favorite flavors via a second (and optional) ferment. Perhaps try Chai Kombucha or use it as a mixer in a kombucha cocktail. The ginger-grapefuit blend (recipe below) is one of our favorite ways to dress up our Kombucha with an additional fermentation.
You can use Kombucha outside drinks, too. Say in kombucha jello or as the base for a lovely fresh vinaigrette. And if you want to go really wild, you can even turn your extra SCOBYs — the Kombucha mother culture — into kombucha scoby jerky (taught in our Dehydrating eCourse).
If you want to be oh-so-seasonal with your drink, you can also just stir basic Kombucha together with juice squeezed from this season’s abundant fresh berries. Yum!
However you chose to use it, be sure to try this Ginger Grapefruit Kombucha as well. It won’t disappoint!
Ginger Grapefruit Kombucha
- 3 cups plain kombucha (learn how to brew kombucha here or here)
- 1″ fresh ginger, cut into matchsticks
- juice of 2 Ruby Red grapefruits (1/2 to 1 cup juice)
Makes about 1 quart.
In a clean 1-quart mason jar or Grolsch-style flip top bottle, mix the kombucha, ginger, and grapefruit juice, leaving at least 1″ of headspace. Cover tightly with the lid and set aside at room temperature (68 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal) for 1 to 2 days. Move to the refrigerator until well chilled. When ready to drink, open carefully, as kombucha sometimes bubbles fiercely (and sometimes not!), and serve cold.
Note: If you would prefer not to juice your grapefruits, you can scrub them well, then cut them in small pieces and merely place the pieces in the bottle or jar along with the ginger, then pour the kombucha over. I find this gives a stronger grapefruit flavor, but also leaves a much more bitter aftertaste, so use your discretion and brew to taste!
Have you ever brewed kombucha? What’s your favorite flavor for the second fermentation?
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