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Twisting the Night Away

It’s Tuesday, and time for Gnowgflin’s Tuesday Twister Blog Carnival, where participants describe what’s been “twisting” in their kitchens! I haven’t participated in some time, but I’m getting back into the groove 😉  So, what’s been twisting in my kitchen?

  • Sourdough starter. I *love* my sourdough, and lately have been experimenting with whole wheat and rye flours. I’m not too thrilled with the results, but that may be because we’re just not used to heavier breads. I really need to invest in a grain mill and grind my own…I’m sure that will help!
  • Kefir. This isn’t new of course! The kids love it, especially in smoothies. We’re currently on a blueberry kick–I froze a ton of them last summer and they blend up so nicely…YUM!
  • Fermented veg: I have sauerkraut, ginger carrots (my personal fav) and pickles all going strong–I cannot wait until the farmer’s markets start up again….this spring I’m dying to try my hand at fermented green tomatoes, a la Bubbies.
  • Kombucha. My first batch failed horribly–mold grew on the SCOBY and everything. I think it was in the wrong room, at the wrong temperature, and I have a suspicion that I didn’t let the water sit out long enough to let the chlorine dissipate before brewing the tea. I was so disappointed! I’ve ordered another SCOBY though, and hopefully the next batch will work. I’m crossing my fingers! If anyone has any suggestions, I’m all ears 🙂

So that’s it! That’s what’s twisting in my kitchen this week. What’s twisting in yours?

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4 Responses

  1. Jen,

    Regarding your kombucha: do you have some starter tea (a little bit fairly strong kombucha usually provided with a scoby) so that your sweet tea mix has a bit of acidity to it? There are ways around it if you don’t, but really, I would recommend at least adding a bottle of plain k-tea (store-bought works as long as it’s the real deal) if they haven’t given you any starter tea. Also, your first batch maybe start out with a little less tea…

    Regarding the chlorine, do you filter your water? It may still have some chlorine in it, but if you boil your water for 5 minutes before taking it off the stove, then it should take care of it. I also leave my tea out overnight… if it’s too hot, it will kill your culture, so be sure it’s really cooled off, too.

    Good luck and keep trying!!

  2. Hi Dani,

    I think I’ll try your suggestion of leaving the tea out overnight–I know I got too impatient and put the SCOBY in before it cooled down enough. I may try using a GT’s kombucha for the starter tea…have you done it this way? With success? I’m sooo tired of paying $3 for a bottle of GT’s….

    Thanks for your suggestions! 🙂

  3. Hiya, Jen! You’re having a fabulous week it sounds like! I think fresh ground flour will make a big difference in your sourdough. Someday I’ll spill the tricks I’ve learned lately. Thanks for sharing your week in the Twister – keep it up!

  4. Jen,

    Yes, I have used GT’s tea as a starter. In fact, the last time we ran the cleaning cycle on the oven, I killed my scoby (lots of little holes in it, and it looked like little blobs of grease floating on top… YUK), and so didn’t even have a scoby. I took one bottle of GT (plain), and added it in a ratio of GT to my own sweet tea 1:4. I now have a healthy scoby and a continous brew of some yummy kombu of my own. I absolutely LOVE having to not pay retail for the stuff, and an extra benefit is that the last time my hubby thought he was getting a kidney stone, I gave him a bunch of kombu and water, and he never passed a stone–it had dissolved to nothing but sediment.

    If you haven’t looked into a continuous brewing system yet, you might consider it… it’s SO much easier than doing it in jars.

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