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Totally Sandorkraut!

Confessions of a fermentation addict

My name is Elle and I'm addicted to fermentation.

It all started innocently enough. My husband bought me a book for Christmas. Only it wasn't just any book... It was Sandor Katz's "Wild Fermentation".

It wasn't long before I was entirely hooked. My kitchen surfaces sprouted jar after Kilner jar of weird-looking jellyfish-like entities swimming in unidentifiable liquids, strange hissing and burbling sounds and regularly exploding bottles. Sherlock Holmes' laboratory had nothing on me.

My family thought I was entirely bonkers and more than once I caught the teenage eye-roll, and even the whispered, "Mum must surely be on the change, she's being totally WEIRD".

Well, yes, I was on the change, for sure. But not any old change! I was on the fermentation path and I wasn't even walking it. I was hurtling down it at some speed! San Francisco sourdough starter? Sure, why not? Milk kefir grains? Yup! Tibicos swap? Yes please! Kombucha SCOBY hotel? But, of course! My chickens are not fast enough eating SCOBYs so I certainly need a SCOBY hotel... Pray tell what exactly is a Jun SCOBY? And why is a Tibetan SCOBY different? In fact, what on earth is a SCOBY?

And then, of course, the fermented dishes followed one another - I had never seen panic change to wondrous enjoyment in so short a time, until I offered my raw fermented salsa to my brood. The first jar was cleaned out in less than two days (it was a litre-jar - they literally spooned it into their mouths). I was flattered.

I have Sandror Katz to thank for all this. His gentle unassuming manner and deep wisdom, wrapped in a child-like wonder and excitement of all things fermentation was and still is my main inspiration. Working with him was a true revelation. I am hooked on ferments for life and totally Sandorkrauted!

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