The Compete Idiot's Guide to Fermenting Foods (Review and Giveaway)

Be sure and check out our current GIVEAWAY while you're here.

As I thought over how I was going to write my review for Wardeh Harmon's The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fermenting Foods my first draft went something like this:

 "I love this book. The end."  

Buy it on Amazon.
Truly, it would have captured the entire essence of how I feel about this masterpiece. Before I read this book I definitely would not have called myself an idiot when it comes to fermentation. I have been fermenting food for several years now, but most of what I have done prior to getting this book involved vegetables and maybe a few fruits here and there. Now that I have read this book I would call myself a "fermenting idiot" because I have gone crazy with fermenting! This book truly opened my eyes to the myriad wonders of fermentation that go beyond make vegetable of fruit concoctions.

Harmon's book inspired and taught me how to make my own sourdough starter with simple and very explanatory directions. Now, I have fallen in love with the taste of sourdough baked goods. I have learned to make simple raw cheeses that taste likes they are straight from heaven (and nothing like their store-bought counterparts!). I have even made raw pickled salmon that tasted amazing and like nothing I had ever had before. This book is truly inspiring!

Salt-brined salmon. Simply delicious on salad. Recipe from Wardeh Harmon's Fermenting Foods.

If you were to see my copy of Fermenting Foods you would think I had owned it for years. Never before have I owned a cookbook for such a short period of time that became so quickly stained, water-damaged, torn, doggy-eared, scratched, written in, bent and bruised. This book is already "well loved" because this book is amazing. It has quickly become one I grab off the shelf at least two to three times a week. (I think I might even use it more than Nourishing Traditions... Shhh.... don't tell WAPF!)

This book has over 150 delicious recipes for every sort of food you could ever dream of fermenting: vegetables, fruits, alcoholic beverages, condiments (fermented ketchup, anyone?), kombucha and other beverages, dairy ferments (kefir, yogurt, feta cheese and many more...), beans, meat and even fish. So many incredible recipes to choose from.

Homemade Feta Cheese preserved in salt brine. Recipe from Wardeh Harmon's Fermenting Foods.

But the recipes aren't the only reason every real foodie should own this book. Harmon is very experienced in the kitchen. Her experience shines through in her helpful tips and thorough explanations.  I feel like I have a helpful companion in the kitchen when I am using this book. The style of writing is extremely approachable and makes it easy to follow and to learn from her.

I do have to admit that it is sort of funny to me that one of the most used books in my house is an "Idiot's Guide" book. I'm not sure why, but when I was younger I used to make fun of the concept. But it really is amazing! Whether you are an idiot when it comes to fermenting, want to become someone who ferments everything, all the time (a "fermenting idiot"), or are just an idiot in general... you should get yourself a copy of this book!

Get a copy through Amazon here.

Or, if you are feeling lucky, enter the giveaway below. 

Also, check back on the blog because I am planning on sharing some of my favorite recipes from the book soon!

My happy sourdough starter. Learn how to make your own. The directions in Fermenting Foods are very easy to follow. 

Do you ferment food? What is one of your favorite books on fermentation?

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  1. I have fermented foods, but not as often as I'd like to. My favorite book on fermentation so far has been Sandor Katz's "Wild Fermentation." This book looks fantastic!

  2. I'm a big fan of Wardeh's so I'd love to have a copy!

  3. Been wanting to learn to do kombucha for a long time... and sourdough... and cheese... and... This would be awesome! :)

  4. i've had this book on my amazon wish list for a while, but i wasn't positive that i really needed it. i'm so glad to hear your good review! my interest in this book has been rekindled. :)

  5. I've followed GNOWFGLINS for quite a while now, but have never had the opportunity to read one of her books. This would be great!

  6. Thanks for the chance to win a copy. I have checked this out from the library a number of times. It is time I own a copy :)

  7. Momma Jo started raw fermenting this past summer and sure would like more knowledge on what more to ferment. This book would simplify learning.

  8. I would love to win this because a friend of mine has it and let me borrow it and I want a copy for myself! Thanks for the giveaway!

  9. Because I know nothing about fermenting and would love to learn

  10. I am interested in trying more fermenting. I made sauerkraut for the first time this year and I make kefir. Now on to more and more....

  11. I love fermenting already but I would love to try some new recipes - I know this book will have a lot of things I never even though of!

  12. I just borrowed this book from the library. I would love to have my own copy.

  13. My husband has been on a big fermenting kick... I am sick of kim chee. Please help!

  14. I am new to fermenting, as well as brewing water kefir and kombucha. I think this book would be so helpful, and I would give it a very loving home. Thank you for the opportunity. :)

  15. Sounds like a fantastic book! Always looking for some new ways to ferment and preserve! Your jars of goodness look are pretty fantastic.


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