Fermentation on Wheels: Road Stories, Food Ramblings, and 50 Do-It-Yourself Recipes

Tara Whitsitt. Bloomsbury, $27 (256p) ISBN 978-1-63286-790-2
Whitsitt, a self-styled “gastronomic nomad” and fermentation educator, takes readers on an entertaining and informative journey as she drives a converted school bus across America and spreads the gospel of fermentation. Fueled by love of teaching, community, and potlucks, Whitsitt, in her lab on wheels, explores the emerging fermentation subculture at organic farms, markets, off-the-grid communities, and urban settings—wherever the DIY food movement and passion for sustainable-living practices thrive. This cookbook (with such headings as “Fear Is the Fuel for Exhilaration”) offers basic fermentation recipes using starter cultures such as sourdough, koji, yogurt/kefir, vinegar, and yeast. She also includes recipes for basics such as sauerkraut, kimchi, and condiments, including a fermented hot pepper sauce and miso mayo. There are sourdough pancakes, English muffins, dosa bread, and beverages such as fig cider kombucha, fruited meads, and fizzies. Salinity charts, equipment lists, environmental-control tips, and information for sourcing starter cultures are also provided. Whitsitt’s adventures encompass battles with bus breakdowns, loneliness, and self-doubt, but she never loses sight of her mission: “Food was never a political statement before I discovered fermentation.” On her magic school bus, she is a veritable Ms. Frizzle, sharing the science and benefits behind the healthy microorganisms of our inner ecosystem. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 06/19/2017
Release date: 09/19/2017
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