Berkshire Fermentation Festival Presenter Videos

What a lovely weekend at the Berkshire Fermentation Festival! This was our third year back teaching and we’re happy to announce that the videos from all the presenters are now up online for you to enjoy!

Catch our Miso Workshop along with presenters Sandor Katz, Adam Elabd, Amanda Feifer, Anne Yonetani, and Alana Chernila!!


Misozuke (Asian Quick Pickles)

Miso Pickles (Misozuke)

** Adapted from Karen Solomon’s Book “Asian Pickles”

2/3 cup white or red miso
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons mirin
2 tablespoons dry sherry
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ tsp red chili flakes

Combine the miso, garlic, miring, and sherry in a bowl to make a thick paste.

Clean and slice vegetables to ¼-1/2” pieces. Vegetables that tend to be watery such as cucumbers, daikon, etc so should be lightly salted and left to drain their excess moisture for an hour; less watery vegetables such as carrots and other root veggies do not need to be pre salted. Pat vegetables dry before submerging them in the paste. Use ONLY the amount of vegetables that can be covered by a thick layer of paste. Let them sit out room temperature in a cool, dark space for 1 hour to 24 hours. Wipe off the miso mixture before eating.


Hoshigaki are a Japanese delicacy made by gently massaging persimmons while they air dry.
The persimmons used to make Hoshigaki are astringent varieties such as Hachiya. Ideally, choose fruit that still has part of the stem. We've used a couple different varieties of persimmons with nice success.

1) The first step is to cut the top off, while carefully leaving the stem that you will tie string to and they will hang from. And then use a knife of peeler to trim away the skins of the persimmon. Then attach the string and find a good place for your Hosigaki to hang. Broom handles work great for this, we've also used knitting needles, drumsticks and hangers to hang the Hoshigaki from.

2) The first week you just let the Hoshigaki hang and dry till they start to create a thin skin.  After a week has passed you begin to gently massage each persimmon every other day. Be careful not to break the skin.

3) As you keep massaging every other day the fructose in the fruit will begin to come to the surface. The "bloom" begins to looks like powdered sugar on your persimmons. Keep massaging until the persimmons are more like a dried fruit, changing into a darker color with the bloom, and then enjoy!



Cranberry Bean with Red Chili, Garlic, and Leek Miso

Ingredients: (makes 1 quart) 

1.5 cups dry cranberry beans

1.5 cups dried koji

2 cloves minced garlic cloves

¼ cup chopped leeks

1 strip chopped seaweed (dulse, kombu, or other)

1-2 tsp red chili flakes (pending on your desired heat level)

4 tbs sea salt



1. Soak beans overnight (we usually soak for 8 hours)

2. Drain the soaking water and move beans to stock pot and cover with fresh water and cook on medium until al’dente. Other options for cooking beans would be to use a pressure cooker or Instapot.

3. Drain the beans, saving the bean liquid from cooking.

4. Once the bean juice has cooled put your koji in a bowl and add enough bean juice to moisten the koji. You will likely have to add more liquid once the first bit is soaked up. You want it to be wet enough that the koji feels well hydrated.

5. In a separate bowl, take all of your strained beans and start mashing the beans being sure to break the hulls on each bean.

6. Once your beans are mashed combine the bean and koji mixtures into one bowl and start mixing. Next add the leeks, red chili flakes, seaweed, and 3 tbs sea salt.

7. Stir everything together well. It should be a toothpaste like consistency and put it aside.

8. Take your jar and using bean juice or water rinse the inside of the jar making sure to well coat all of the sides of the jar and then sprinkle with the last tablespoon of salt making sure to coat all the sides and the bottom of the jar.

9. Spoon the miso mixture into your jar doing your best to well pack the jar getting out as many air bubbles as possible.

10. Salt the top of the miso well and then add a small piece of wax paper that is the size of the diameter of your jar on top of the salt layer. This will help with any potential mold growth. You have the option to add a weight if you choose, I tend not to with smaller jars and like to add a plate or other weight on bigger batches of miso.

11. Put a lid on your miso, and then label and date it. Store in a cool dark place away from direct sunlight. We like to keep ours under our bed!

12. We like to start our miso in the winter and let it ferment for atleast 10 months (making it a one year miso in miso years)

13. When you are ready to harvest your miso, open it up and take off the weight if you have one and wax paper. Then scrape the top surface of the miso till you get to something that looks nice and rich in color.

14. From here you have a couple options: 1) You can strain off the tamari (liquid pooling in the top of the miso) and save for later use as a flavoring agent. And then you can use the miso in it’s chunky form or take it and food process it into a paste. 2) You can mix it up well and eat it as is.

15. Move it to the fridge and enjoy for months and years to come!

Fermented Cranberries in Honey

Winter fermentation life can be so different that the bounty that comes in late Spring and runs through late Fall. One of our favorites is Cranberries. I know most of us associate them with cranberry sauce but, we like this spin on these amazing potent berries.

INGREDIENTS: (Makes 1 quart)

4 cups Raw Cranberries

4-5 cups Honey

1" inch Ginger Root

Take your cranberries and give them a rinse under water and then you can either lightly food process them or leave them whole and prick each berry with a knife or fork. We like the later option for this process.

Put your cranberries in a clean jar with the ginger root cut into think slices. Pour honey over the top of the cranberries until you just cover them. Make sure to leave at least 2" of space in the top of the jar to allow for gases and also for the liquid that will be released from the cranberries as the honey ferments them.

We like to let them sit for 5-7 days, periodically giving the jar a little shake. And then enjoy! We like to add this to cocktails, into salads cut with vinegar and other vegetables, and more!