Cherry Kombucha and a Fillmore Container Giveaway

Cherry Kombucha and a Fillmore Container Giveaway

Looking for something red white and blue to serve at your Independence Day BBQ? Or how about just red. Cuz that’s what I actually have for you.  Cherry kombucha is probably my very favorite or at least my most frequently-made kombucha.  It’s is what I throw in my bag or picnic basket for everything of a potluck-y nature in the summer, knowing that even those who don’t love kombucha can rarely resist its ruby charms.

Cherry Red Kombucha

Red White and Booch. PS-That elephant is not normally pink.

The easy, longer way to do this is to stick a jar of finished kombucha in the fridge with about 10-20% whole cherries in (~3/4 of a cup cherries per quart jar of booch). I let it stew in there for a week or longer (it really just gets better and better for up to a month). It takes on a gorgeous, deep red color and tastes like summer.

A Perfect Pair: kombucha and cherries

A Perfect Pair: kombucha and cherries

The way that I’m going to recommend to you today is a bit more work, but is both faster and fizzier since it’s a true secondary fermentation.

I’ve been digging on these 32 oz growlers for all of my secondary beverage fermentation since a friend gave me a couple as Secret Santa gift last year. They are pretty, sleek and they do a very nice job of trapping fizz.  With my intense number of ferments, I never have a ton of space in the fridge. And with only two of us in the family (the dog isn’t a kombucha fan) drinking this stuff, I don’t like to bottle a ton at a time.

Sweet Cherry kombucha in growler

Lucky you, dear reader, Fillmore Container has these gorgeous, amber “growlettes” for a super low price (seriously, try pricing them elsewhere. The difference is nuts), as well as some larger-sized options for those of you who have more space in and around your fridge. One of you will have the chance to win two of these growlers and a stainless steel strainer that will help you make this version of my Cherry Cherry Booch Booch (Gaga? Anyone?).  You’ll be brewing flavorful secondaries of all kinds of ‘booch in no time.  These are also great for fermented beverages of other kinds from beer to water kefir.

Cherry Kombucha

That funnel is niftier than it appears! It’s stainless steel and therefore safe for your boochy organisms. It has a removable fine filter, which is great for getting rid of SCOBY strands and cherry bits.

CHERRY CHERRY BOOCH BOOCH (CHERRY KOMBUCHA RECIPE)

yields one quart of cherry kombucha, scales well || Fermentation Time 3 days || Active Time 30 minutes ||

Hi! My name is Amanda. I'm from Michigan and I have a cherry-love problem.

Hi! My name is Amanda. I’m from Michigan and I have a cherry-love problem.

There are a lot of ways to end up with a fizzier ferment, but the best way to get fizzy booch is to bottle your tea when it’s still sweet.  If you’re in the habit of letting it get to the sourer side of Sears, you’ll want to curtail that habit and cut fermentation time by a goodly amount.  I keep two continuous brew systems going: one for immediate drinking and one for bottling.  I’m not recommending that, I’m just offering up that you’ll need a “fresher” brew if you want bottling to lead to bubbles.

Some fizz in that growler.

Some fizz in that growler.

Ingredients

  • 8oz sweet cherries
  • 3 cups finished but still sweet kombucha, divided

How-to

  1. Pit your cherries. Place them into a food processor or blender with about a 1/2 cup of the finished kombucha and blend until liquified.
  2. Pour the mixture into your growler and add the remaining kombucha.
  3. Seal your container tightly, keeping in mind that you need to keep a close eye on glass containers.  Although these containers are built to withstand the pressure of internal carbonation, explosions can happen.  See the notes below for some tips on bottling in glass.
  4. Allow your bottle to sit at room temperature for 2 days, or until you are sure that full carbonation occurred (by using one of the methods below).
  5. Stick your growlette in the fridge overnight or for at least a few hours until chilled. Feel free to leave it in your fridge for a week.
  6. Once it’s chilled, strain the kombucha into glasses for drinking. Garnishing the rim with a cherry and enjoy! The remaining kombucha stores extremely well.

Notes on bottling in glass vessels:

Many people bottle in glass and stick a raisin in there. When the raisin floats to the top, you know the beverage is carbonated.  That doesn’t work well here for a couple of reasons. First, it’s a little tricky (but not impossible) to see in the amber bottles.  More importantly,  as much as you may blend, you cherries will not be truly liquid unless you strain them out before you bottle. That’s a viable option, but I think more flavor is imparted if straining happens after secondary fermentation. So the deal is that any cherry solids left will almost immediately rise to the top.  They’ll impede you from seeing the raisin’s rise and defeat the purpose. In other words, I don’t recommend using the risin’ raisin for this particular carbonation process.

Instead, bottle another batch in a plastic container.  When the container is too hard to squeeze, you’ll know it’s time to stick your glass bottles in the fridge. You can do the same with a quart ball jar, and keep tabs on the lid.  When it’s puffed and hard or misshapen by the pressure, it’s time for everyone to head into the cool spots.

I personally keep my glass bottles or growlers either inside a small cooler or in a double paper grocery bag. If there’s an explosion, at least it won’t be in my face.

Again, explosions are quite unlikely to happen with a secondary kombucha, but they are definitely possible so due care and attention should be paid.

Getting ready to be pitted

Getting ready to be pitted

GIVEAWAY

Now for that giveaway! Disclosure – I loved these growlers so much that I asked Fillmore Container if they would offer them to readers.  They agreed and also sent me a couple, plus some larger growlers, the stainless steel funnel strainer and the mason jar cherry pitter to play around with. Opinions on all items are my own. And while we’re on the topic of opinions, I would never have thought I needed a cherry pitter. I was quite content with my wine bottle/chopstick method until this little beauty came along. It’s CRAZY how much more efficient and cherry-saving it is. Here’s a video from Fillmore on how to use it properly.

This strainer/funnel is the (cherry) bomb. It has a removable strainer that is easily cleaned and allows you to use it as just a funnel when its straining capabilities are not needed. You can win one, below!

This strainer/funnel is the (cherry) bomb. It has a removable strainer that is easily cleaned and allows you to use it as just a funnel when its straining capabilities are not needed. You can win one, along with two of the 32 oz. growlers, below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Ferment

42 comments

  1. Andrea says:

    This cherry kombucha sounds so good! I made a second ferment of cherry rooibos kombucha and it turned out great. Always looking for nice containers to put it in, now that I have some family members willing to try it. And I love the idea of fresh fruit in the second ferment instead of sugar.

  2. Jon says:

    I would definitely use one of those for bottling! And I definitely agree about using at least one plastic container as the guage for the rest of the batch’s secondary fermentation. Also I’m not sure I correctly signed up for your email updates but I do want to be on the list, I think there was an error when I clicked on it just now :/

  3. Sarah says:

    I just made some cherry shrub with kombucha vinegar and it is amazing! I’m definitely in love with that funnel.
    When doing a 2nd ferment, I just burp my bottles once a day. When the booch (or kefir) gets good and carbonated, I give it one more day and then refrigerate. I get different fizz in each bottle so this gives me better results.

  4. Erin says:

    I make about 3 gallons of kombucha every two weeks. As I was decanting this weekend, my partner said to me, after eyeing the many grolsche bottles on the countertop, “I believe we are at Kombucha Capacity.” Love this cherry idea. My first inclination would have been to juice the berries, but I’ll definitely be trying them whole!

  5. Kristin says:

    Wow, this all looks fantastic! If I won I think I’d have to do some fruit with a pit first – just so I can test everything out. ;-) I’m thinking strawberries!

  6. Lisa P says:

    Love the strainer! It would definitely come in handy for my kombucha making, as would the growlers. I have flavored my kombucha with organic cherry juice (tried both tart and black), but have not tried the actual fruit yet.

  7. Kirsten Henrickson says:

    I’ve just started brewing kombucha and am having so much fun. This giveaway would add to the pleasure!

  8. Barbara says:

    I’d love to make this with a recap lid! I’ve never made or drunk any kombucha before, so this will be a first at both, but I’ll bet the cherry is magnificent! Thanks!

  9. Eileen says:

    Such a pretty color! And I think that strainer would be super useful for filtering schnappses and other liqueur infusions. I think I would try out a batch of homemade cider with a RECAp. Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

  10. Andrea G says:

    The cherry flavor looks like a great idea. That third picture of the cherries with the water beads on it looks so good! Never been to Fillmore Container but it is on the list for a road trip this summer!

  11. Deb says:

    I made kombucha over 20 years ago. I stopped because I realized I had learned more than my mentor, there was pink fuzz growing in my container, and I didn’t know what to do about it. Seems a lot has been learned about fermenting in the last 2 decades. ;> I recently got a scoby and it should be about done with it’s first batch. I’m excited to try it and try the 2nd fermentation – which we never heard of 20 years ago. Cherries are in season for a few more days – thanks for this wonderful idea.

  12. Brooke says:

    Just making my first batch of kombucha. I’m still waiting for the scoby to grow! Excited to make different flavors! Thanks for the recipe!

    • Amanda says:

      Congrats on joining our ranks! I hope everything turns out perfectly! If it doesn’t, no worries! Come on back and poke around or comment for some help!

      –Amanda

    • Amanda says:

      Yes, I’m with you! One of my favorite fermenteries, Food and Ferments, makes a grape version that is deeeeeeevine!

  13. Bradley says:

    I actually have yet to try kombucha but it is on my long backlog of ferments to experiment with. I like the idea of a spiced apple one, though.

  14. Renee says:

    I’m quite new at this fermenting deal, and honestly can’t remember the one time I tried kombucha–but we’re planning to make some and this would be awesome!

  15. Lori N. says:

    The Cherry kombucha sounds amazing.I would love to try this.I haven’t tried fermenting yeah but have been eagerly reading books on it

  16. Julie says:

    OMG I love kombucha but have never attempted to make it. This could be my crossover! ;-)

    And if not, I’ll attend one of your classes and get into it! haha.

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