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Why I’m a Sandor Katz Fangirl

Sandor Katz is the home cook’s best friend when it comes to fermentation. And that’s really cool.

August 7, 2015

If you don’t know Sandor Katz, go ahead and watch the video at the bottom of this post then come back to me. My gushing will make more sense if you have a grasp of his work and nature.

What I really like about this guy is that he’s empowering home cooks. He hasn’t opened a restaurant or marketed his own line of food products, nor does he endorse himself by pandering to society’s public figure obsession and slipping into the celebrity chef culture. He’s a crusader of the true food movement, the food culture that takes place in the home kitchen and around the dining room table. His mission is to spread knowledge of an ancient form of food preservation in a modern world. Katz encourages us to fall in love with the process and outcome of fermentation by equipping us with the information and confidence to do it ourselves.

I’ve been lucky enough to see him talk at a festival during which (as I understand is common practice for him) he casually made a batch of sauerkraut onstage. It doesn’t have to be any more complicated than massaging salt into shredded cabbage then stuffing everything into a jar to soak in its own brine. If you do want to get more complicated, have a look at either of his books, Wild Fermentation or The Art of Fermentation (the latter has a foreword by Michael Pollan and recognition from the James Beard Foundation…not too shabby).

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