I have also been promoted to Food Service Manager, which is a major step up in responsibility. That is a fairly new development, only since Wednesday. The staff that I will be managing is amazing, and I am really looking forward to being with them every day and leading them to new heights.
Now on to the newest project - fermentation. I came upon an article this morning and it reminded me of a very lovely and dear friend of mine, Christy. Christy and I worked together in the beginning of my career at EF, then she moved on to be a district goddess with Green Goddess Group. That brought her from living here in Knox to moving back to Louisiana, and I miss her every day. Well, Christy is the fermentation queen. I.Magi.Nation Fermentation is her side project. She will be teaching classes in LA, and blogging about it. http://imaginationfermentation.wordpress.com/
She taught me the benefits of kombucha, which I have documented here. She showed me some of the best raw recipes I've ever had. She also taught me a little big about making kimchi and sauerkraut. Reading this article from The Organic Consumer Association http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_29135.cfm sparked my interest, so I figured I would give it a try.
A half head of cabbage, shredded
Two stalks celery, cut on the bias
A red carrot (it's what I had, though I do love the flavor), shredded
Half a yellow onion, sliced thin-ish
One medium beet, shredded
Grated horseradish root
Grated ginger root
Sea salt (enough to make it slightly salty)
Ras-el-Hanout (recipe is here https://www.facebook.com/notes/healthy-people-culinary-program/morocco-revisited-hpcp-adults/302169609834581 )
Mix everything in a big bowl and let it set for about 30 minutes, until it starts giving up liquid. Squeeze out the liquid, reserving it all, and pack veggies tightly into a non-reactive container of some sort. I'm using BPA-free plastic, but glass or ceramic is what has traditionally been used forever. Once it's all in there, use a plate or something else to press it down firmly. I used a smaller plastic lid, and then topped that with a small glass bowl filled with water to weigh it all down. I poured all of the remaining liquid in then topped it off with a light salt water solution with warm filtered water and sea salt. A paper towel gently held down with a larger lid completes the set up. I tucked it into a corner of the counter, and there it will sit for the next couple of weeks. I'll post updates as it goes through the different stages. (Please note - I made a small batch because it's my first and I didn't want to waste such amazing ingredients if it doesn't work. Next time, if all goes well, it will be a much bigger batch.)
On a side note, I discovered my new favorite kitchen gadget at Dollar General today. I think it was about $3. I grated the carrot and beet on the large holes, the ginger and horseradish on the small ones. It has a rubber strip on the bottom edge so it doesn't slip from the cutting board, the blades are super sharp and grated with ease, it has notches cut into the back edges so it can be used right over a bowl without it moving, the handle is just the right size and very comfy to use, and it cleaned up in seconds. Every kitchen needs one of these. Go out and get one.