We’ve been brewing Kombucha on our kitchen counter for years, long before it was available in grocery stores and even some gas stations.
Baby SCOBYs Everywhere!
If you’ve brewed kombucha, you know that with each new batch, the brewing culture (called a SCOBY, which stands for “Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast”) creates a “baby” or daughter culture that can be used to brew its own batch. While this is an awesome way to continue the procreation of the Kombucha species, these baby SCOBYs can add up and a new kombucha brewer can wonder what to do with them all!
When I first started getting into making kombucha, I tried to pass on these baby SCOBYs to friends and family so they could brew their own Kombucha as well, but I only had a few friends who were interested in trying it, so I eventually ended up composting most of my SCOBYs because I didn’t have another use for them.
Fast forward a few years and I met Hannah and Alex (who my kids call “The Kombuchas) at a health conference. They own Kombucha Kamp and are the authors of the fantastic new book The Big Book of Kombucha, which is a gorgeous and informative encyclopedia of everything Kombucha.
Hannah and Alex gave me a sample of a delicious treat that they make: Fruit Leather with leftover SCOBYs! I thought it was a brilliant way to use excess SCOBYs and get the benefits of the enzymes and probiotic cultures it contains.
SCOBY Fruit Leather Recipe
This recipe is similar to my original fruit leather recipe but has the added benefits of the kombucha cultures. It is so simple to make and my kids love these as snacks or an after dinner treat.
You can easily make this in a dehydrator or oven and it is the perfect way to use up extra Kombucha SCOBYs. If you brew Kombucha, give these a try!
How to Make SCOBY Fruit Leather
Yield 10 -12
Our family loves this healthy probiotic-rich treat. When dehydrated at a low temperature, the SCOBY maintains its healthy acids and bacterial activity, secretly making this leather a terrific probiotic-rich snack.
- 2 cups diced fruit (strawberries, peaches, pears)
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 cups pureed SCOBY
- 1–2 teaspoons spices or herbs (optional, but some of our favorites are basil, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and thyme)
- Combine the fruit and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until the fruit and sugar are thoroughly broken down and combined, about 10 minutes. Add the fruit mixture and SCOBY puree to a blender, along with the spices, and pulse until the mixture has the texture of applesauce and all the ingredients are combined.
- Spread the mixture onto wax paper or silicone dehydrator sheets in a layer about ¼ inch thick. Dehydrate for 12 to 36 hours. If you’re using a dehydrator, use the lowest setting (95–110 deg. F [35– 43 deg. C]). If you’re dehydrating in an oven, set it to its lowest temperature and prop the door open.
- Once the mixture is dried and no longer sticky, gently remove from the wax paper. If the leather is difficult to remove from the wax paper, stick it in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes; then peel off. Cut the leather into strips. These can be rolled up or cut into bite-size pieces. Store in an airtight container at room temperature; they will keep indefinitely but might dry out over time.
Do you brew Kombucha? Will you start?
Recipe and photo Excerpted from The Big Book of Kombucha © Hannah Crum © Alex LaGory. Photographs by © Matt Armendariz. Used with permission of Storey Publishing.