If you know me, you know about my love for Kombucha and my two fermentary businesses here in Thunder Bay, where I regularly brew Kombucha and make other delicious fermented foods. So you might be wondering why I’m talking about Kombucha when I’m supposed to be talking about SCOBY? What does Kombucha have anything to do with today’s topic? Stick around, and I’ll tell you all about it.
Kombucha is a fermented beverage people enjoy for its unique taste and tremendous health benefits. It contains many powerful ingredients and one of those ingredients is called SCOBY.
What is SCOBY?
SCOBY is a thick, cloudy rubbery mass that helps the fermentation process. SCOBY stands for “Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast,” and it’s an essential ingredient that I use in the fermentation and production of my Kombucha.
Fermentation is a chemical process where carbohydrates like sugar and starch turn into alcohol and acid.
The appearance of SCOBY can vary, but usually, it’s round, dense and a little rubbery. It also looks a bit cloudy with a very mild smell of vinegar.
How SCOBY Works
When producing Kombucha, you add a SCOBY into sweetened black or green tea, and then you let it ferment for a few weeks.
The bacteria and yeast in the SCOBY start to break down the sugars in the tea and convert them into alcohol and carbon dioxide.
In the end, it has a sweet and tangy vinegar-like taste with specific flavours that you leave to ferment.
The fermentation process also increases probiotics’ concentration, which brings lots of positive health effects to your gut.
Many studies have connected probiotics’ consumption to reducing cholesterol levels, improved immunity and enhanced weight loss, among other excellent benefits.
Can You Eat SCOBY?
Yes, you can eat SCOBY! They are perfectly edible and good for you. SCOBYs are safe to eat on their own and will not cause you any harm.
However, be careful when incorporating SCOBYs into your recipes because they are not as simple as you think. If you have experience cooking with SCOBY, then go for it. You can make many tasty treats like smoothies, fruit leathers and jerky, but remember that what you make and how you go about it will make your SCOBY dish either edible or inedible.
But before you experiment with cooking with SCOBY and making different dishes, I suggest you start by making your own batch of Kombucha. Unleash your inner kombucha brewer with my Kombucha Starter Kit! I include instructions and a little gift receipt for a $10 coupon.
If you don’t want to brew your own Kombucha but enjoy drinking it, try some of my current favourite flavours and let me know what you think:
In Health and Wellness,
Nadia La Russa
Click here to learn more about Narrow Gate Foods, my small-batch, big-love fermentery in Thunder Bay, Ontario.