Tag Archives: veggies

Marcus McCauley and his son fermented cabbage

Fermenting, Farming, and Family: Meet Marcus McCauley of Picaflor and McCauley Family Farm

Marcus McCauley and his son fermenting kimchiMarcus McCauley named his brand Picaflor, the Spanish word for hummingbird. This flittering, pointy-nosed pollinator is believed to represent playfulness, enjoyment of life, resiliency, and in some cultures a bridge between the past and the future because of its unique ability to fly both backwards and forward. Given Picaflor’s origins and Marcus’s intentions, the hummingbird seems an apt mascot. Picaflor, which crafts and sells fermented hot sauces and pepper flakes, was born from a fortuitous event on Marcus’ farm.

As the story goes, a local farmer approached Marcus and said, “I’ve got a ton of peppers. If you can do something with them, you can have them.” Marcus recalls that there were at least 2,000 pounds of peppers. He accepted the bounty and the challenge, and started fermenting and experimenting. Before long, his garage was filled with overflowing, bubbling buckets of fermenting deliciousness. The first hot sauce he crafted was a sriracha that immediately gained a dedicated local following of his friends and family. He was now the hot sauce guy, and there was no turning back. Continue reading Fermenting, Farming, and Family: Meet Marcus McCauley of Picaflor and McCauley Family Farm

Meet Kirsten K. and Christopher Shockey: Authors, Educators, and Fermentation Evangelists

Kirsten & Christopher ShockeyKirsten Shockey and her husband Christopher are the founders and co-owners of Ferment Works, a fermentation education company in Oregon. Their goals at Ferment Works are to help people learn to ferment, teach them how to create great flavors, and (most importantly) help them feel comfortable enough to do it at home alone or with friends and family.

Kirsten and Christopher live on a 40-acre farm in the Applegate Valley of Southern Oregon. As homesteaders, they’ve raised and homeschooled four children, grown fruit trees and gardens, nurtured animals, and fermented thousands of pounds of vegetables and other plants. Kirsten and Christopher work, write books, and teach classes and workshops together. They’re also working to build an online community gathering space for those who are passionate about fermentation. Continue reading Meet Kirsten K. and Christopher Shockey: Authors, Educators, and Fermentation Evangelists

Kraut Source In Use

Kraut Source: Making it Easy Peasy to Create Small-Batch Fermented Masterpieces at Home

Kraut Source In UseKaren Diggs, the San Francisco–based founder of Kraut Source, is an entrepreneur, chef, nutritionist, and author of Happy Foods: Over 100 Mood-Boosting Recipes.

The Hawaiian native began her career as a classically trained chef; she can make pâtés, soufflés—the whole shebang. She got her start in Hong Kong, where she spent seven years as a chef at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel before starting two restaurants. In all her culinary training, fermentation really never came up, even among the old-style European chefs she studied under. Continue reading Kraut Source: Making it Easy Peasy to Create Small-Batch Fermented Masterpieces at Home

Rot your Food Right with Airlocks for Small-Batch Fermenting: Gather the Facts, Know Your Options {recipe below}


By Kirsten K. Shockey & Mara Rose

airlocks2What do a ceramicist, a classically trained chef and nutritionist, a former ad sales exec, and a reformed business analyst have in common? They are all working hard to make it easy for the rest of us to ferment our own food and drinks. Each of them has created a smart system to make it safe and stress-free to ferment small batches of food in Mason jars; these systems are called airlocks.

New to the home-fermenting scene and wondering what an airlock is? It’s a special system that allows carbon dioxide to escape from your container, while keeping oxygen out. Fermentation is a process that is ancient, very low tech, and forgiving. So, while an airlock isn’t necessary, using one takes some of the babysitting out of the fermentation process and allows you to “forget” about your little jar while the good bacteria process your veggies. Continue reading Rot your Food Right with Airlocks for Small-Batch Fermenting: Gather the Facts, Know Your Options {recipe below}

The Dirt on Dirt from Waste Farmers: Soil, Technology, and Our Collective Future

headshot2 maraMara Rose
Founder & CEO, Hatch Lab

 

_DSC4174How much time do you spend thinking about dirt? How often do you walk on it and think about its being alive? John-Paul Maxfield and Matt “Soil Shaman” Celesta sat down with me to explain why they’re obsessed with it. These dirt nerds work for Waste Farmers, a certified B Corporation founded in 2009 and based in Denver, Colorado. Waste Farmers is the umbrella where, as John-Paul (founder and CEO) explains, “We get to have this really ethereal big purpose, which is to live authentic lives and change the world”. Under that umbrella sits Batch:64, Maxfield’s, and a growing number of other brands. I left my conversation with John-Paul and Matt feeling inspired and optimistic about the ability of entrepreneurs like them to build successful businesses, while also fundamentally improving our global environment. Continue reading The Dirt on Dirt from Waste Farmers: Soil, Technology, and Our Collective Future

Trust the Seed

ckHatchLab_Seed-596web“Seeds have the power to preserve species, to enhance cultural as well as genetic diversity, to counter economic monopoly and to check the advance of conformity on all its many fronts.”
―Michael Pollan, Second Nature: A Gardener’s Education

Isn’t it mind-blowing that a teeny, tiny seed can grow into a spectacular, productive, healthy, delicious plant to nourish you, your family, and your friends? We think so, which is why we’re excited to offer our new class Start Seeds Indoors. We’ve partnered with a Boulder, Colorado, company, The Urban Farm Company of Colorado, to offer an entertaining 30-minute class that gives you all the information you need to get started with your own seeds.

You may be wondering why starting your greens from seed is worth the effort. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons.

  1. It can save you money. Although there’s an up-front investment, once you have the basic equipment, starting your plants from seed is a huge money saver. In our class, we estimate it will cost you about $15 to grow 32 plants; if you bought those same veggies from the grocery store or farmers’ market, they’d cost closer to $80. That’s more than 80% savings. Continue reading Trust the Seed