This summer I felt like I had a part-time job brewing kombucha. In the heat and unusual humidity, I had to brew and bottle every four days or even every three! I love kombucha but can (and should) drink only so much.
If you need a break from brewing or want to go on a vacation (please take me with you), you can make a SCOBY hotel. Simply prepare your tea as usual for kombucha—brew, sweeten, cool, innoculate—and add all your SCOBYs. Cover the vessel with a cloth and let the tea sit for up to six weeks. At that point, make a new hotel for your hungry SCOBYs. Like all living creatures, they will need some food to survive. At any point, remove a SCOBY or two to brew more tea when you feel ready to get back into the kombucha rhythm.
After you move the SCOBYs to their new hotel, you’ll have strong vinegar. I LOVE that I no longer buy vinegar (it’s the little things in life…). I use either my scrap vinegar or my kombucha vinegar. In fact, in The Art of Fermentation Sandorkraut writes that lab tests have found that vinegar and kombucha mothers are identical.
I have used my kombucha vinegar to:
- Rinse my hair
- Combine with baking soda to clean bathroom surfaces
- Clean the toilet
- Make salad dressing
- Make barbecue sauce
Of course, when you cook the vinegar in this recipe, you kill all the good microbes. I don’t mind killing some microbes here and there. I eat plenty of other probiotic foods.
Kombucha Barbecue Sauce
- 1 cup kombucha vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
- 3/4 cups ketchup
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tbsp mustard (I used Dijon)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
1. Whisk ingredients in a small saucepan until smooth.
2. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer.
3. Cook for about 20 minutes or until barbecue sauce has reduced by about a third.