Workshop: Benefits & Basics of Food Fermentation

(Wolfeboro) – Global Awareness Local Action (G.A.L.A.), a local nonprofit organization dedicated to celebrating sustainable solutions, is offering a free workshop this Sunday, May 18th titled, The Benefits & Basics of Food Fermentation.

What do your favorite foods like chocolate, beer, cider, pickles, soy sauce, yogurt, cheese, wine, and kombucha all have in common?  Each of these delicious foods has gone through the age-old (no pun intended!) process known as “fermentation.”  Join, Jack Waldron and Diane Johnson, long-time fermentors, as they teach the basics skills behind making these delicious foods that we often take for granted.  Waldron and Johnson will also help debunk the myth that fermenting foods requires expensive chemical sterilization, exact temperature controls, and controlled cultures.  Learn from these experienced fermentors why the process can instead be simple and straightforward and not require any specialized equipment.  Participants will leave with jars of started sauerkraut, kombucha, and maybe even a fermented surprise!

This Sunday, May 18th, from 2-4pm at Tom and Mary Beth Bryant’s home on 20 Lakeview Dr. join fellow community members and learn how to save money, stay healthy, and understand the valuable art of food preservation.  This event is free and open to the public.  A suggested donation of $10 per party is appreciated.  RSVP by calling 569-4760 or emailing contact@galacommunity.org.  The Homesteading Workshops Series is part of G.A.L.A.’s Sustainability In Action program and has received partial funding from the national nonprofit organization, Do Something (www.dosomething.org).


In addition to learning the basic skills involved with fermentation, participants will also learn the health benefits.  Medical and scientific studies confirm what folklore has always known – eating fermented food helps keep people healthy.  The process of fermentation preserves nutrients by producing “bio-preservatives” such as alcohol, lactic acid, and acetic acid.  The process also breaks these nutrients down into more digestible forms.  Consider soybeans for instance.   Soybeans are an great protein-rich food, but they highly indigestible without undergoing fermentation.  By breaking the soybeans’ complex protein into easily digestible amino acids, we arrive at familiar Asian cuisine such as miso, tamari (soy sauce), and tempeh.  Milk and wheat are two other great examples of food that becomes more digestible after fermentation.  In addition to preserving and aiding digestion, fermentation can also add new nutrients like B vitamins, function as an antioxident, and even remove toxins from some foods.