There's a lot of exciting things happening in fermentation right now. Since launching Punk Domestics in 2010, I've seen DIYfermented foods trend up year over year. Lately there's been an uptick in innovation around tools that aid in fermenting. Recently my friend Nicole from FarmCurious launched her FarmCurious Ferments tool, using the ReCAP; it's a tool I myself use very regularly. Another friend, Ernie Miller of Rancho La Merced Provisions, is producing truly gorgeous lactofermentation kits with fermentation locks built right into the lids of swing-top jars. Yet another friend, Karen Diggs from here in the Bay Area, has designed, engineered and is bringing to market a new tool that is truly interesting and exciting.
Dubbed Kraut Source, it's modeled after the classic Japanese pickle presses, but with a few nuances that set it apart. Kraut Source is a five-part kit that screws on top of any standard wide-mouth mason jar, allowing you to control how much or little product you want to ferment. Made entirely of stainless steel, it features a spring-loaded press that keeps foods submerged under the brine, and a moat and cap on the top that allows gas to escape without letting any unpleasant bugaboos in.
Karen's Kickstarter is already going gangbusters (go check it out!), but she is graciously offering up a gift to one lucky winner to help spread the word. You can win the Double Gourmet & Pounder Kit, which comprises 2 Kraut Source with Mason jars, 2 deluxe wooden pounders, 2 (4 oz.) packets of hand-harvested Celtic Sea Salt®, 4 packets of gourmet organic spice blends for making sauerkraut and pickles, and 2 printed how-to booklets with 30+ recipes. Domestic shipping is included when the product is ready in November. That's a $100 value, people!
So how do you enter to win? We've got options -- lots of options. You can do any or all of the following things:
All entries must be logged in the Rafflecopter widget below to qualify for entry. One lucky winner will be selected at random. You've got until midnight PDT on Friday, August 22, so get subscribing, liking, pinning and tweeting!
There's absolutely nothing wrong with straight-up blueberry jam, and if that's what you want, we've got plenty of recipes. But if you've got the blues with the same old same old, here's some inspiration for new flavors with blueberry jam.
Summer grilling is great, but burgers and dogs are only as good as the condiments that dress them up. Step away from the packaged varieties and try your hand at DIY condiments to make haute dogs and hamburgers.
Sweet, luscious melons are a treat that can only be truly appreciated at the peak of summer, when they're at their juiciest, gushiest best. If you've been overly tempted and have a glut of melons, here's a few ways to turn them into treats that will last beyond summer's steamy days.
Got tomatoes? Here's a rundown of ways to put up your maters, from basic canned tomatoes to salsa, ketchup and more.
Updated for 2014
I imagine few among us have never considered taking our passion for food craft to the next stage. Perhaps you've mastered a certain jam, or have a secret recipe for a killer BBQ sauce, or have even conquered the holy grails of cheese making, home brewing or charcuterie. Would you take it to market?
It's not for the weak of heart, which is why I'm always so impressed by those that do. It's also why I'm a big fan of the Good Food Awards. In their fourth year now, they seek out the best craft foods in the nation, aiming to put them on a pedestal for the world to see.
I know some of you in the Punk Domestics community have taken the leap and turned your perfect creations into market-ready goods. And so I hope that each of you will select your finest products and submit them to the Good Food Awards. The entry period is currently open; simply go here to fill out the entry form before August 1. If you're selected, your product will be up for blind tasting in September.
I am also proud to announce that I will be one of the judges in the Preserves category this year. As noted, the tastings are blind, so I'm afraid I cannot afford any preferential treatment to Punk Domestics community members.
Want to see an example of a cottage food business who's gone on to bring home the gold? Check out my interview with Julia Sforza of Half-Pint Preserves, herself a Punk Domestics contributor, too. Also check out my interview with Dafna Kory of INNA Jam, who also has won.
The winners are announced at a grand gala in San Francisco in January, and a lavish affair it is. I've had the pleasure of attending on the first and third years. It's such a pleasure to see the hard work of these artisans recognized. And it's an even greater pleasure to taste their handicrafts directly.
It's summer, and everyone's gardens are overflowing with zucchini. Don't be daunted! Here's a bunch of ways to put up your zukes so can enjoy them well into the colder months.
Having an herb garden is great, when you need a pinch of this or that. But when the herbs go rangy and begin to bolt, it's time to hack them back and put them by. Here's a few applications for when you need to use your homegrown herbs by the hank.
Fire up the grill and bust out the wood chips. Summer is smokin' hot, and we've got a variety of hot smoking projects for your Smokey Joe. What are you smoking?