Synopses & Reviews
Winner of the 2013 James Beard Foundation Book Award for Reference and Scholarship, and a New York Times bestseller, The Art of Fermentation is the most comprehensive guide to do-it-yourself home fermentation ever published. Sandor Katz presents the concepts and processes behind fermentation in ways that are simple enough to guide a reader through their first experience making sauerkraut or yogurt, and in-depth enough to provide greater understanding and insight for experienced practitioners.
While Katz expertly contextualizes fermentation in terms of biological and cultural evolution, health and nutrition, and even economics, this is primarily a compendium of practical information — how the processes work, parameters for safety, techniques for effective preservation, troubleshooting, and more.
With two-color illustrations and extended resources, this book provides essential wisdom for cooks, homesteaders, farmers, gleaners, foragers, and food lovers of any kind who want to develop a deeper understanding and appreciation for arguably the oldest form of food preservation, and part of the roots of culture itself.
Readers will find detailed information on fermenting vegetables, sugars into alcohol (meads, wines, and ciders), sour tonic beverages, milk, grains and starchy tubers, beers (and other grain-based alcoholic beverages), beans, seeds, nuts, fish, meat, and eggs, as well as growing mold cultures, using fermentation in agriculture, art, and energy production, and considerations for commercial enterprises. Sandor Katz has introduced what will undoubtedly remain a classic in food literature, and is the first — and only — of its kind.
"This is, quite simply, the finest book on fermentation available. It is comprehensive, erudite, and surprisingly profound. Sandor Katz is the guru of a large and growing tribe of fermentation enthusiasts and this book will awaken you to the thrilling world of benign bacteria all around us. Not only do they provide us with pickles, cheese, bread, alcohol — but our existence depends on bacteria and they deserve our reverence and respect." Ken Albala, Food Historian and Coauthor of The Lost Arts of Hearth and Home: The Luddite's Guide to Domestic Self-Sufficiency
"The Art of Fermentation is a remarkable testimony to the astonishing passion that Sandor Katz has for all matters fermentative. History, science, and simple how-to wisdom are woven together in this extensive journey through the amazing diversity of foods and beverages that are founded upon fermentation." Dr. Charlie Bamforth, Professor, Department of Food Science and Technology, University of California, Davis and author of Food, Fermentation and Microorganisms
"The Art of Fermentation is an extraordinary book, and an impressive work of passion and scholarship. It lays the foundation for fermenting all kinds of foods, and whoever reads it will be able to negotiate any recipe for ferments (and conquer any lingering nervousness about fermentation) with impunity. I am so impressed - and ready to begin! Thank you, Sandor Katz." Deborah Madison, author of Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone and Local Flavors
"Sandor Katz has captured the essence of fermentation in this new book, which bubbles over with scientific, historical, and practical information about humankind's first biotechnology and earth's first energy source. The mystery and sensory allure of naturally fermented products ranging from fruit, honey, milk, all manner of starchy grain, tuber and stalk — even fish and meat — are laid bare and enthusiastically and lucidly brought to life for both epicure and the do-at-homer." Patrick E. McGovern, Scientific Director, Biomolecular Archaeology Laboratory, University of Pennsylvania Museum, and author of Ancient Wine and Uncorking the Past
"Sandor Katz has already awakened more people to the diversity and deliciousness of fermented foods than any other single person has over the last century. Once you look at the world through the fresh eyes of such a genius, there is no going back to the tasteless world you had previously occupied. The Art of Fermentation is a wonder — so rich in its knowledge and so practical in its application. This book will be a classic for the next millennium." Gary Paul Nabhan, author of Renewing America's Food Traditions and Desert Terroir
About the Author
Sandor Ellix Katz is a self-taught fermentation experimentalist. He wrote Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods — which Newsweek called "the fermenting bible" — in order to share the fermentation wisdom he had learned, and demystify home fermentation. Since the book's publication in 2003, Katz has taught hundreds of fermentation workshops across North America and beyond, taking on a role he describes as a "fermentation revivalist." Now, in The Art of Fermentation, with a decade more experience behind him, the unique opportunity to hear countless stories about fermentation practices, and answering thousands of troubleshooting questions, he's sharing a more in-depth exploration of the topic.