Strawberry is one of my favorite fruits to add to kombucha and water kefir. Mostly because it’s the best fizz producer I’ve seen. I have to be careful when opening my bottles because an eruption is likely to happen. I’m a miser when it comes to my fermented beverages so this is how I open a bottle I think might go volcano on me so I don’t miss a drop.
It’s also on my favorite list because it tastes so good. I’ve been selling kombucha at our local farmers market and the strawberry ones are usually quick to go. Plus the kiddos always love it. And boy, does it look pretty!
Like any other kombucha recipe, this is perfect for water kefir as well.
Once your kombucha tea is brewed to your liking (I like mine strong), place in a vessel you can seal tightly. Fido jars work well for this. I don’t use the flip top bottles at this point simply because it’s hard to get the strawberries out. You can if you puree your strawberries. Add strawberries, fresh or frozen. If you use fresh, you will want to crush them up or puree them to release the flavor. Frozen can go in whole. Add dried hibiscus flowers and mix well.
For kombucha, let set for about 2 days or until nice and fizzy. Water kefir tends to fizz up much faster so I usually let it set no more than 24 hours. Strain out strawberries and hibiscus and now you can place in flip top bottles or capped beer bottles as I do. Let it set for another day to let the carbonation build back up and then place in the fridge.
Sounds very delightful. Can I ask you when you mention selling kombucha at the market do you purchase bottles for doing this? Thank you for sharing the recipe.;
Right now I’m just using beer bottles purchased from my local brew shop. I’m on the look out for affordable clear bottles but am not having much luck. I get a lot of people stopping by asking if I’m selling beer, lol!
Thank you Melanie. That is funny about people thinking it is beer:-) I have considered doing the same, but also would like cost efficient bottles. I like the idea of the clear so you get the beauty of the colors too! Hope you find some, thx again.
They are bigger than singles though…still haven’t found the best solution for individual servings.:)
Thanks so much for your help! (Now to wait the few weeks until my things arrive!)
Marci, those look great. These bottles in individual servings are out there some where. We will find them:-)
where do you get your dried hibiscus from?
Oops, forgot to put in a link for it. I’ve bought mine from http://www.frontiercoop.com as well as from amazon (amazon link is above now).
I am awaiting my Water Kefir Grains, Milk Kefir Grains and Kombucha Mushroom! I went to a local natural health store today, where they had for the first time ever….water kefir! It was “Apple” flavored, so I had my first taste of Kefir ever!
It tastes more like alcohol than I expected which makes me a little concerned about passing on to the kiddos…or drinking myself since alcohol upsets vertigo which I deal with regularly. I read somewhere that if you flavor it without using fruit the alcohol content is nearly 0%. Is this true? Can you flavor it with herbs, teas and etc.?
Thanks again Melanie for a great video!
There is definitely a risk of water kefir going alcoholic but luckily you know me so you don’t have to experiment like I did I’ve found, I’m completely safe from it going alcoholic if I use the normal sugar ratio of 1/4 cup sugar to 1 quart of water. During the second ferment, if you add about 1/4-1/2 cup fresh fruit or just 1/4 fruit juice and let it set for no more than 24 hrs again, you are safe as well. Because kefir does have yeast, it might still have a wine like smell and taste especially if you let the ferment go long enough to eat out most of the sugar.
The problem comes when you put the grains in 100% juice (like apple or grape). Even after just 24 hours, I can tell their is alcohol in there. The amount of sugar in fruit juice is more than the normal water kefir recipe. I tested it once with a hydrometer and the plain water kefir had little to no alcohol (there is still small amount like a nonalcoholic beer might have) but after a 24 hr ferment in apple juice, it was 4% alcohol.
You can actually make a pretty tasty hard cider with water kefir grains
Great post. So nice to “see” you! You look like such a sweet person
Love the video and how you ‘rescued’ your precious water kefir! Your son seemed pretty excited to get some of it too -adorable!
Thank you very much Melanie! I can’t wait to try this! One more question if you don’t mind…CAN you flavor water kefir during the second ferment with herbal tea?
You sure can! You can either add the tea mixture right to the kefir and let it steep at room temp for a day or you can make a strong tincture to add to the kefir to taste.
KOmbucha making at home. Can I start with a hibiscus tea from the very start. or should I make an oolong tea base and then add the hibiscus flowers when i bottle it?
You sure can! You can use most any herbal tea as long as you include about 25% black tea with it. It’s also recommended that every 4th brew you do as full black tea.
I make jasmine and hibiscus that way.
Curious how you sell them at market. Do you need a certified kitchen? do you warn people to get it home and in the fridge fast?
It all depends on your state regulations. My state allows us to sell at the market as long as the food product is below a certain pH which kombucha falls comfortably in. I do have to slap a label on it warning that it was made in an uninspected kitchen and could have come in contact with allergens. I do tell people who don’t drink it right then that they’ll want to refrigerate it. It’s not urgent that they refrigerate it though. It just further ferments if left out for too long (like a full day or so) and could make a nice volcano when opening.