Spring Cleaning-Fermented Foods

This has been the year that illness has turned our household upside down!  Now that we have had the opportunity to open the windows and hopefully flush out those bugs that have been hanging around for far too long, my culinary mindset has shifted to all things fermented to help heal our bellies from  holiday indulgences, and illness.  I taught a basic fermentation class several weeks ago where each participant took home a starter vegetable ferment.  We have kept the ferment alive, and it has served us well, pickling little bits of veggies along the way to try new tastes.  They work well on sandwiches to add a little zest, I have chopped them up into Ben’s tuna salad he takes for lunch, and their complex sour flavors work wonders to balance out braised fatty cuts of meat that we all love to eat in the colder months.

I purchased a yogurt maker several years ago, as yogurt and granola is a staple breakfast for us.  I thought I would wise up and stop spending so much on little containers of the stuff riddled with sugar.  As most things go, this mama got lazy and went back to the way of buying quarts and singles… I recently found a glass jar that fits my maker, instead of the plastic one it comes with (it is BPA free) And fired it up again…The kiddos have enjoyed both making and eating it as it works as both a science experiment and good food.  I will sometimes top their familiar bowl with a little jam or applesauce to sweeten it up, and I like the more intense tang that  homemade yogurt provides.

New to our repertoire, we just started Nancy Silverton’s iconic sourdough starter this week.  After watching her story on Chef’s Table it was hard not to. Although,  after reading her very involved directions, my anxiety ramped up a bit and I thought ‘I have two children already, how in the world can I sustain another life?!?!’, but it is now part of our kitchen counter for all to see and watch over hopefully.

Below, find a link for an intriguing counter-top fermenting crock that I have not tried, but I am hoping for come Birthday time (hint, hint Jason),  and recipes for the vegetable ferment, as well as Nancy Silverton’s Starter.

Now if they only could make probiotic Girl Scout Cookies…

Happy Cooking!






Sour Pickles



  • 2 pounds vegetables
  • 2 cloves spring garlic, sliced thin (optional)
  • 1 dill flower, or 5 sprigs fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dill seed (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon coriander seed(optional)
  • ½ jalapeño, seeded and slivered (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons salt



  1. Pack vegetables into one or two clean quart jars. Tuck in garlic, dill, coriander and jalapeño, if using.
  2. Add salt to two cups boiling water. Stir until dissolved. Add two cups of ice (made with filtered water if yours is chlorinated). Stir well until the ice has melted and the brine is cool. Pour brine into jars, covering vegetables.
  3. Loosely cap jars and place in a bowl or pan because the jars may leak during fermentation.
  4. Leave pickles on the counter to ferment. The brine will bubble lazily and become cloudy. Taste after 3 days, leaving on the counter another day or two if you want your pickles more sour, or refrigerating if they’re ready. They keep a month in the refrigerator.


Starting a business is… WOW!! It is funny, because one of my first checkmarks off the never-ending list of small business ownership was setting up a sole proprietership. As many who have done this before me know, it is hardly a project of one. Therefore, my first post is a list of gratitude to those who have helped me in this journey:

My husband, sisters, and parents for listening to all of my crazy ideas, for reeling me in when they got a little too out there, and giving me the reassurance that I could do this.

Jay Kitterman, who took a glance at my resume, all those years ago, and made me realize my passion for teaching.

Kemia Sarraf and the staff at genHkids, who have shown me what true perseverance looks like through our work.

Kevin Lust, who met with me at the Small Business Association and showed me the ropes of small business start-up.

Julie Roland and B Creative, who designed my logo and gave Copper Pot Cooking Studio a brand.

Nancy Richards and staff at First Bankers Trust for providing amazing customer service.

Wanless Trust, who provided the perfect space for Copper Pot Cooking Studio.

SCDPH for all of the insight they have given me in setting up a commercial kitchen.

Susan and Doug Danenberger for letting me cook in their amazing kitchen and for giving me a TON of small business advice and recommendations.

Chris and Bruce Sommer and the Market on Koke Mill for our lovely sinks and learning the fine art of small business start-up.

Erik Karlicher for his amazing plumbing work.

Chris Rudin and Rudin Printing for friendship, generosity and business cards!

Doug and Victoria Ringer for the painting.

Marlin Ouverson for designing the website and putting up with my non-functional IT brain.

Sabrina Martindale and Sugar Jar Bakery for some great equipment.

Tim Jackson, my brother-in-law, who does a fine job making hardwood furniture.

Dave and Sean Peecher, super electricians that handle all of those wires that truly terrify me.

Bob Ferry, for always being just a phone call away, and for finding my Dad’s lost tape rule.

My kids, Ben and Norah, for putting up with my stressed-out brain, not always being there to put them to bed or make them dinner, but letting their mom make her dream a reality and reminding her that she was going to be great at it.

My Mom, for teaching me the fine art of keeping it together (most of the time) when managing a family and a career, and for watching the littles when their mom was off at work.

My Dad. He was with me when I began this process in December 2014, and I know he will be there in spirit when we open in March. Miss you, and love you much.

Jason, Kurtis, and Ethan Perry, who did a ton of moving, sanding, and general labor to get the job done a little bit faster.

To the countless friends and family who have spread the word, shared a post on Facebook, and supported me through this journey.  Bless you all!