Tag Archives: seasons

In a pickle about pickles? Learn about kombucha and kimchi and a whole world more at The House of Ferment

The last few weeks have been a little hectic, to say the very least – I’ve moved from Shoreditch to Dalston (for work not actual house move), thereby increasing my hipster rating significantly (I haven’t yet told them that I’m a massive geek – but they’ll learn), I’ve had the mother of all stomach bugs (too much information? Believe me, I could get much more graphic…. but I won’t) and I’ve been helping with the comms for The House of Ferment which launches tomorrow and which is what I’m going to tell you about, right now. Forgive the indulgence, but think it’ll be of interest to you if you’re London based and foodie. I’ll resume usual service about eating out and cooking in soon (and don’t worry Chris, I’m mentioning you now so you don’t feel like I’ve forgotten this blog is secretly about my obsession with you!)

The Science Gallery London in its own words is: “…a space, focused on 15–25 year olds, where art and science collide. A flagship project for Culture at King’s College London, it will engage over 300,000 visitors per year in cutting edge research in science, the arts and design, bringing together researchers, students, local communities and artists in new and innovative ways to stimulate fresh thinking.

SGL doesn’t have a fixed abobe (yet) but last year ran a successful season entitled Frequencies and has followed this up in 2015 with its current season FED UP: The Future of Food. This season launches this week with a brand new installation at Borough Market entitled The House of Ferment.


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The House of Ferment has been developed by the clever folks from Grizedale Arts in collaboration with Science Gallery London. The process of fermentation goes back hundreds of years, but it is making a global comeback and is now the latest craze to excite chefs and foodies across the world. Do you know your kombucha from your nuka, or your kimchi from your borscht? Come along to The House of Ferment to find out more so that when you’re next dining at the latest fancy pants raw food venue, you won’t feel confused by pickles and processes.

The House of Ferment is a multi-functional arts installation incorporating a collection of edible fermented cultures that explores and discusses the processes behind food preservation. Billions of bacteria have been carefully nurtured and developed into six different cultures, each of which produces a distinctive flavour. The cultures have been used to create over 30 peculiar and pleasing products which you’ll be able to try, including sourdough, several kimchi (of Korean origin), nuka (a Japanese bran pickle), local milk cheese and yogurt, nettle ‘champagne’, pickled cucumbers (of Polish origin), sauerkraut, borscht and more unusual products such as kombucha.

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In the installation, the fermented foods are combined with functional elements by selected artists, including a bespoke table by the 2013 Turner Prize winner, Laure Prouvost, and an inimitable vessel by the artist Bedwyr Williams. Further functional works by Sarah Staton and Giles Round are augmented by a new range of kitchen equipment created by Grizedale Arts and the village of Coniston.

The installation will act as a hub for a variety of workshops, talks, performances and a pop-up café. Whilst all events are free, you will have to book in for certain tastings and talks through Eventbrite. The link can be found on the main Science Gallery site or you can see the different events and book here:

The House of Ferment launches on 7 July and is open to the public until Saturday 11 July. it will be at 6 Southwark Street, within Borough Market.

Reasons to be thankful. 1, 2, 3.

I’ve been doing a lot of complaining and bitching and moaning this year. In fairness, it has been a crappy arse of a year.

However, on Sunday, I officially entered the last year of my 30s and for the last month I’ve been on gardening leave, so it’s been a long period of reflection and contemplation. A little like Lizzie in The Walking Dead, I’ve been looking at the flowers (thankfully, I don’t have a Carol in my life though) and I’ve realised I’ve got a bucketload of things to be utterly grateful for. So here they are in no particular order.

  • My family (immediate and extended). They are an utter bunch of weirdos but I wouldn’t change ’em
  • Mr Wino (aka the husband). Slightly less of a weirdo than the above, but still peculiar in his own special and indeed fabulous way
  • Forever buddies/chums/gangs of awesome. Yes, sometimes they drive you insane, yes sometimes they let you down but let’s be honest, you’ve done the same to them. Ultimately these people are your brothers and sisters and whilst they may take a bullet for you, they’re just as likely to laugh at you when you fall over. Perfection
  • Rekindling old friendships and forging new ones
  • Autumn. Living in a world where seasons exist is something to be stupidly grateful for, particularly in Autumn when the skies are blue and the clouds are fluffy and there’s dew on the grass and a nip in the air
  • The Supermoon. This summer’s supermoon was incredible, watching it rise and glide across the skies above my garden was a treat
  • Discovering far flung places. We’re so lucky to live in a time where it’s affordable to jump on a plane and in a few hours, experience something so utterly different to the world we live in and learn from that. Or just to go shopping.
  • The internet. If you can’t jump on a plane, you can still learn about the world at the click of a button or a well worded search. And you can buy clothes and look at pictures of cats/food/clouds/doge or watch videos of animals doing ridiculous things. What else do you need?
  • Books. I’ve had a Kindle for a number of years, but I’ve recently rediscovered the joys of actual physical books. I’m in awe of people who can craft words into beautiful phrases that make your heart sing with joy
  • Being a woman. This is a short list, so I’m not going to go in depth here, but being a woman is fucking awesome for reasons that I’ll explain in a future post. I’m sure you all agree with me anyway
  • Being a woman of colour. As a woman of colour, fast approaching 40 who felt like there was nothing out there that spoke to her as a teen, I’ve been inspired by the likes of The Aerogram and Brown Girl magazine for giving young Asian women today a voice and hopefully helping them realise they’re not alone
  • Having a roof above my head and food to eat. Obviously.
  • My cat. She’s got a number of curious quirks and strange habits due to being abused (we assume) but there’s nothing that makes you feel more loved than when she miaows at you until you feed her. And then ignores you.
  • Being frivolous. Often it’s wise to ignore the voices in your head that tell you that a beanie with a veil is utterly nonsense. If it’s going to make you happy and you’re not going to starve yourself for a month to afford it, buy it. We all deserve a treat now and again.

I’m sure there’s more but I’m leaving it there for now for fear of becoming one of those list people who can only write in bullet-ed form. Which is a distinct possibility.

What are you grateful for? Let’s fill this page with joy and wondrousness. And until then, here are some pictures of my ridiculous cat. It is the internet, after all.

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