Coffee Kombucha

A few weeks ago I was encouraged to try and make coffee kombucha. While the recipes do float on the internet, I never ventured away from the tea-based garden variety. This time, however, my curiosity has been piqued. 

The standard recipe is, well, standard. Not much different from the tea kombucha; brew coffee with sugar, cool it down, add SCOBY, wait. Allow me to address you here for the exact quantities and other details, or look up other variations and pick whatever smiles in response. What I was interested in though is a bit different angle. You see, every morning in our household starts with a strong cup of coffee:


It’s not a dripping machine weakling, it’s a real stuff, deserving its own post, which I intend to do, hopefully, next week. What we have left every morning after we finish the ritual is coffee grounds. Up to this point, I used them as a fertilizer for the plants that love acidic soil, namely roses, azaleas, and rhododendrons. They happily thrive on this diet:


So, my line of thinking, or whatever goes for that process in my brain every time when I stumble onto new fermentation recipe, was: can I squeeze some more goodness out of my coffee grounds before feeding my fat roses and obese rhodos? The experiment didn’t require much effort, and I had quite a few SCOBYs sitting in their hotel, so I could easily sacrifice one. With that in mind, I started collecting the coffee liquid in a form of “secondary brew.” It went like this: finishing up my coffee, I poured boiling water over the grounds, allowed it to brew and cool down to the room temperature, and then poured the liquid into the 1-gallon mason jar, leaving grounds for the plants. When I had the jar filled enough to leave the room only for a SCOBY and a cup of a starter, I poured out some of the liquid, diluted one cup of sugar in it and poured it back in. In went a SCOBY with kombucha starter, and for the next two weeks I waited – the stage all too familiar to anyone who ventured into the fermentation.

I have to say, I remained skeptical during those two weeks. The mixed smell of coffee and kombucha was unfamiliar and difficult to place. SCOBY obviously thrived, as it produced new baby. Results were somewhat surprising and not at all unpleasant. The drink tasted like, well, coffee and kombucha – shocking, right? The surprising part though was this: it turned strangely alcoholic, noticeably more so than your standard tea brew. Not sure why, maybe my SCOBY had a bit too much yeast after the long stay in the hotel. I will verify the effect on the second batch and report in an update to this post. The brew for the second batch has been collected while the first one was fermenting, so it’s already in the process. For now, I haven’t done any secondary fermentation attempt, just enjoying it right out of the fridge; to stay on a safe side, I don’t drink it if there is any driving involved in the nearest time.

Do give me a shout if you try it. Oh, and stay tuned for the post describing the mightiest coffee ever.

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