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Wild Fermentation : The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods
Bread. Cheese. Wine. Beer. Coffee. Chocolate. Most people consume fermented foods and drinks every day. For thousands of years, humans have enjoyed the distinctive flavors and nutrition resulting from the transformative power of microscopic bacteria and fungi. Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods is the first cookbook to widely explore the culinary magic of fermentation.
"Fermentation has been an important journey of discovery for me," writes author Sandor Ellix Katz. "I invite you to join me along this effervescent path, well trodden for thousands of years yet largely forgotten in our time and place, bypassed by the superhighway of industrial food production."
The flavors of fermentation are compelling and complex, quite literally alive. This book takes readers on a whirlwind trip through the wide world of fermentation, providing readers with basic and delicious recipes-some familiar, others exotic-that are easy to make at home.
The book covers vegetable ferments such as sauerkraut, kimchi, and sour pickles; bean ferments including miso, tempeh, dosas, and idli; dairy ferments including yogurt, kefir, and basic cheesemaking (as well as vegan alternatives); sourdough bread-making; other grain fermentations from Cherokee, African, Japanese, and Russian traditions; extremely simple wine- and beer-making (as well as cider-, mead-, and champagne-making) techniques; and vinegar-making. With nearly 100 recipes, this is the most comprehensive and wide-ranging fermentation cookbook ever published.
Booklist-Fermentation is one of the earliest natural processes involving food and its preservation that humans sought to control. The earliest puffed-up breads, wines, and cheeses likely occurred by chance, and results were scarcely uniform or predictable. Disconcerted by off-flavors and spoilage in beer, wine, and baked goods, early peoples learned to control microorganisms whose existence would not be demonstrated for centuries. But in that process of control, people lost some of the benefits of wild fermentation. Sandor Ellix Katz has experimented with Wild Fermentation, and his book explains to others how to take advantage of natural fermentation processes to produce bread, yogurt, cheese, beer, wine, miso, sauerkraut, kimchi, and other fermented foods. A gold mine for science-fair projects, Katz's work presents properly supervised young people ample opportunity to explore both the science and the art of fermented foods (alcoholic beverages excepted). - Mark Knoblauch
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Chelsea Green Publishing
August 31, 2003
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