Convenience vs Community

I am doomed. I started making homemade pasta regularly and I can no longer stomach store-bought. It simply can’t complete with the hearty, toothy, delicious and filling homemade version. Okay, so eating more delicious food isn’t a fate worse than McDonald’s but I have now created more work for myself. Because in addition to store-bought […]

August Is the Reddest Month

If you live in the Northern Hemisphere and have planted a garden, you may have begun to experience what-am-I-going-to-do-with-this-glut-of-tomatoes syndrome. Mild symptoms often begin in early August and quickly intensify to the critical stage. The following ideas will help alleviate and, in some instances, depending on the harvest and the number of plants you have, cure […]

Preserved Lemons

If you prefer your food bland, skip this blog post. Until now, when I made preserved lemons in the past, honestly, I struggled to use up an entire jar. Classically, you use preserved lemons in chicken tagine but we don’t eat much chicken. They go well with fish but we eat little fish. You can […]

Garlic-Dill Pickles

For pickles, fermentation was the primary means of preservation until the 1940s, when direct acidification and pasteurization of cucumber pickles was introduced. — The Art of Fermentation Store bought pickles may taste good but to render them shelf-stable, food manufacturers pasteurize the cucumbers in vinegar. On the plus side, they last forever. On the down […]

Good, Better, Best Zero-Waste Shopping

Every time I post pictures on Instagram or Facebook of my bulk shopping or farmer’s market hauls, I get lots of questions: Do you bring your food home in bags and transfer it to jars? (No, I bring the jars shopping and fill them directly.) Doesn’t your food cost more because the jars weigh so […]

Garlic-Dill Sauerkraut

I have converted several self-professed haters of sauerkraut with this garlic-dill blend. It tastes just like dill pickles. And almost everyone likes dill pickles, including kids. People who tell me they hate sauerkraut often also say they want to like it because of the many health benefits that lacto-fermented foods such as sauerkraut offer. Fermented sauerkraut: Is […]

An Oven That Saves Lives

I love low-tech solutions. An oven made out of cardboard boxes will likely garner less attention than will a refrigerator that alerts its owner via Apple Watch of eggs on the verge of spoiling. At least, it would attract more attention here in Silicon Valley—and probably gobs of venture capital to boot. (Wouldn’t it be […]

How Does Fermentation Prevent Food Waste?

food preservation helps prevent food waste

Today I taught a fermentation workshop at CVSan in Castro Valley as part of the organization’s Commitment to Serve Week. The theme of the week is zero-waste. It was so much fun! (Thank you Jordan, Naomi and all the staff at CVSan.) But what does fermentation have to do with food waste? Well, I’ve decided […]

How to Freeze Food Without Using Plastic

When I post pictures of my jar-filled freezer on social media, I get lots of questions about it, usually along the following lines: Is it safe to freeze food in glass? (Yes) Do you use special glass for the freezer? (No) Don’t your glass containers break? (Only that one time…) I have had little trouble […]

Fermenting Versus Canning

Updated 06/11/17 fermentation noun     fer·men·ta·tion     \ˌfər-mən-ˈtā-shən, –ˌmen-\ “[The] process by which microbes consume sugars and produce acid, alcohol and gases.” — from The Good Gut “The transformative action of microorganisms.” — from The Art of Fermentation Often when I discuss fermentation, people say to me “Cool! I’ve always wanted to try canning.” Before I started fermenting […]