Springtime is full of flowering elderflower trees, and this lovely scented flower is often used of course for elderflower lemonade and cordial, but is also amazing in fermented drinks. It has a strong flavour and it helps create lots of carbonation. Other flowers can also be used in fermentation, like rose and lavender. The apple juice is best homemade but you can also buy good-quality cold-pressed and unpasteurised apple juice if you prefer.
Make the simple kombucha as described. Pour into a clean kilner-style glass bottle with a flip-on lid that seals tightly when closed.
Add the fresh apple juice, leaving a 5cm/2in gap for carbonation to take place.
Add the elderflower heads to the bottle and close the lid, making sure it seals tightly. If it doesn’t the drink will not be as fizzy as it could. Turn the bottle carefully upside-down to mix.
Let it ferment at room temperature undisturbed for 24–48 hours. Open the bottle to see if the taste and carbonation are to your liking. Otherwise leave for another 12–24 hours.
Store the bottle in the fridge when finished and remember it will continue to ferment, so if you are planning to store it for some time it’s better to put it straight in the fridge without fermenting it first at room temperature.
If you find your kombucha a bit strong dilute it with sparkling water.