I put the slow in slow food.
Because I am possibly the slowest (and somewhat meticulous) vegetable cutter or slicer. Seriously! Ask my friends and lover(s). Food projects take me a long time to undertake, which can be a downer when the outcome is not so great (beef jerky=winner, sour pickles=downer).
My fermentation projects, sour pickles aside, have been successful. I made sauerkraut following Sandor Katz’s Wild Fermentation book in the summer, which I love a lot by the way, using cabbage from Tony’s farm, dill, garlic and black peppercorns. And it turned out quite terrific if I do say so myself.
I’ve never really been a fan of sauerkraut to be honest until I made my own. My mom, eclectic cook that she was, used to make sauerkraut and boiled potatoes and sausages for dinner, her ode to Germanic cuisine. And I wasn’t really a fan of the sour combination that came from store bought jarred sauerkraut. Homemade sauerkraut tastes alive with its tangyness, tickling the tongue, and as it ages continues to change.
My newest lactid acid creation is root kimchi (or a type of panchan, Korean side dish) which I made with daikon, carrots, turnips, Jerusalem artichockes, as well as garlic and green onion tops, late autumn relics from my garden.
Both of these took me awhile to prepare in my usual fashion (I gave up on the mandolin since I almost always nearly slice myself) and I also let those sit out for over 8 days. Salt is magic, bringing out the brine and creating fermented goodness. Soy sauce, fish sauce, sour pickles, miso! So delicious! The fact fermented foods are healthy is secondary to me. I also love the idea that fermentation is a practice that is thousands of years old, as I have always romanticized ways of preservation, noting that climate and temperature, the environment are huge factors in the final product. As Sandor signed my book, “Fermentation Fervor Forever!”