If you’ve read anything I’ve ever written about fermentation, you may have picked up on a theme: I LOVE SANDOR KATZ! If I were currently a teenager, I would probably have Sandor Katz posters on my wall, covered in cutout paper hearts and stickers. I met him once and I was too shy to say anything, and since shyness is not a problem I’m usually afflicted with, you know it’s serious.
My love for him began when someone gave me a copy of his original fermentation showstopper, Wild Fermentation, many years ago. I thought it was really neat, I marked some pages for things I wanted to try. A few years later when my schedule opened up a bit, I got a new copy and spent some serious alone time with this beloved book. It completely rocked my world. Freshly freed from the a job deep in the processed foods industry, Wild Fermentation spoke to everything I believed (and continue to believe) about what is wrong and what could be right with the American diet. I quickly fell down the rabbit hole of fermentation addiction. Like many of you, I went from making just yogurt and sourdough and the occasional vinegar, to making daily pickled veggies, kombucha, multiple kinds of yogurt and kefir, weird sodas and other odd concoctions in the space of a couple months.
Though I burned out a bit on that pace, and discovered that certain things didn’t feel worth making on an intensively regular basis, the habit set. The inspiring nature, wonderful writing and unbelievably exciting content of this classic forever changed how I would spend my free time and income. It is a revolutionary book. It debunks ideas about fermenting vegetables with whey, explains some of the nutrition of fermentation and has just tons and tons of recipes. Most importantly to me, it showed me that there was absolutely nothing to be afraid of. It showed me that fermentation was not only fun, but that it is also the safest method of food preservation and one of the most delicious cooking methods in existence.
Because this book has had so much meaning for me, I thought it would be a great gift to give one of you, in the hopes that it will foment the kind of change that you want in your life in 2014. Chealsea Green Publishing is kindly making that happen, so I’m very proud to say we’ll be giving a way a copy of the book that started a food revolution. Come back next month when I’ll be giving you my new love, Katz’ James Beard Award-Winning The Art of Fermentation. You can find all the entry details for the Wild Fermentation giveaway below.