Cookbooks: Fiery Ferments

June 14, 2017

When it comes to cultured pickles and preserved, Fermented Vegetables by Kristen and Christopher Shockey is one of my most-referenced cookbooks. I take a peek at it any time I want guidance on how to put together a new-to-me a batch of fermented veg, and my beloved fermented dilly bean recipe is simply a scaled down version of theirs.

Their second book, called Fiery Ferments, was released a couple weeks ago and it is just as good and useful as their first volume. It opens with an introduction to basic vegetable fermentation and includes a really useful discussion of the many airlocks and fermentation accessories that are out there (as well as advice on how to ferment without investing in any gear beyond a jar and a ziptop bag).

From there, the book shifts to explaining the skills necessary to make the recipes in the book. You get step-by-step guide to building a basic pepper mash, brine-based sauces and pickles, pastes and mustards, and kimchis, relishes, and salads. For those of you looking to build your confidence in these techniques, this part of the book is worth the price of admission alone.

Then, because Fiery Ferments is focused on building pickles, sauces, and condiments that walk on the spicy side, you’ll find an in-depth section on the ingredients that bring the heat. Ginger, galangal, and turmeric get equal billing with peppercorns and chiles.

Then we get to the recipes. They are small batch (smaller than the recipes in Fermented Vegetables, which I appreciate), varied in flavor and construction, and are illustrated with glorious, appealing pictures. Best of all, in addition to lots of ferments, they also included a handful of recipes designed to help you make good use of the things you’ve made (those fermented jalapeno poppers above look darn tasty).

Thanks to the folks at Storey, I have a copy of this book to give away. Follow the instructions below to enter.

  1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me about your fermented food to eat, drink, or share.
  2. Comments will close at 12 noon eastern time on Sunday, June 19, 2017. A winner will be chosen at random and will be posted to the blog later that day.
  3. Giveaway open to US residents only. Void where prohibited.
  4. One comment per person, please. Entries must be left via the comment form on the blog at the bottom of this post.

Disclosure: Storey sent me sent me a review copy of this book and is providing the giveaway unit, both at no cost to me. All opinions expressed here are entirely my own. 

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84 thoughts on "Cookbooks: Fiery Ferments"

  • I am a novice at fermented foods—I have only made sauerkraut, but I would love to learn more. THanks for the chance to win.

  • I’ve made sauerkraut for several years and recently expanded to kimchi. Would love to learn more and expand my horizons, particularly to hot sauces

  • My first ferment was carrots which were delicious! I also made beet kraut which is great alone or in salads. I enjoy spicy foods and small batches since it’s just me and my husband. Would love to add this book to my collection! Thanks for the opportunity.

  • I just started fermenting via the mastery challenge this year and really enjoyed it. I tried your cabbage/carrot sauerkraut! Would be fun to learn about the process and expand my repertoire.

  • Sauerkraut is my main ferment as I am just learning to do this on my own. I don’t know if apple brandy is considered a ferment, but if so I’m quite a pro with this one 🙂 I’d love to make hot sauces. I grow alot of peppers, they end up jellied, frozen, dried….if I got good at hot sauce it would give me a reason to grow more peppers!

  • I have yet to make my own but I will soon.
    My daughter is really into it and she is going to give me a lesson!

  • I used to make kefir and kombucha and need to get back to those. For food the most common thing I make is kraut…common, but wonderful!

  • I’m big with the fermenting but there’s always more to learn. Exploring condiments right now and this book fits right in. What I do most currently is fermented vegetables of different sorts, but mostly a shredded root kimchi.

  • My main ferments are:
    sauerkraut (I add shredded carrots for color and taste.)
    Kimchi – cabbage based
    Kkakdugi – a radish based kimchi
    I also make my own yogurt from whole milk -which is also a fermented food.

    I want to try making fermented ketchup and would like to try some others.

  • I really only eat sauerkraut on Reubens… but I love Reubens. My coworker says home made kraut is the only way to go, but I haven’t had a chance to try doing that yet.

  • I enjoy making and eating kimchi and would like to learn more about fermented hot sauces for my heat loving husband!

  • I always have a batch of kkakdugi (Korean radish kimchi) going. Boiled egg + kkakdugi = best breakfast ever!

  • I’ve been doing a basic cabbage/ginger/carrot/garlic slaw ferment for 15 years or more… and finally have branched out. Now I’ve got an airlock and I’ll ferment just about anything! Most recent experiment: watermelon rind.

  • Ooooh, that looks great! I regularly ferment kimchi and sauerkraut, but Ive been thinking of trying out some hot sauces. This book looks perfect.

  • Does it count that my ferment is adding a little yeast to a bottle of apple juice and letting it work until it sparkles? It even works with pasturized juice.

  • I have fermented keifer water, komboucha, carrots, and dilly beans. I want to make a no-cabbage kimchi.

  • I’ve made sauerkraut and various other veggie ferments before, but it’s been a few years and this year my goal is to get back in the swing (ferment?) of things!

  • I’ve been dabbling in fermenting but haven’t had great success. My first try provided some pretty good kimchi and I have been making some yogurt regularly too. I would love a resource to keep trying!

  • I am a lover of ferments who hopes to learn to make her own in the near future. I also love growing hot peppers and this year’s harvest is going to be a good one. This book came out at the perfect time for me!

  • I have not yet tried fermenting myself, but my family used to make Sauerkraut, which was delicious. So this book might help me to start my own fermenting journey

  • Currently, I’ve been fermenting a lot of cabbage to make sauerkraut, but my first and favorite ferment has to be yogurt.

  • We always have a jar of kraut in the fridge. Now that it is growing season we will add a jar of fermented radishes! Love those veggies.

  • I don’t do a lot of fermented food outside of sauerkraut, but I make plenty of mead, cider, wine, and beer.

  • With a garden that I hope will be bursting at the seams with different varieties of peppers, I’m hoping to start playing with different types of fermented hot sauces.

  • I regularly make kimchi and occasionally half sour pickles. I’d love to expand my horizons with fermented food and this book would certainly inspire me.

  • I tend to make kimchi every year, and dill pickles most years. I get creative about what other recipes I try from year to year.

    BTW, this book just popped up in my amazon recommendations (I already own their other book), and I was thinking that it looked like something I wanted to check out.

  • Dear Marisa,

    I ferment about 2 gals of Kombucha every 2 weeks. It is my soft drink of choice, often drinking it straight or mixed with a dark berry fruit juice. I have Kristen and Christopher Shockey’s first book and this book would really be a great addition as I am addicted to Tabasco the fermented hot sauce.

  • Ginger fermented carrot slices is one of my favorites, but I haven’t made any of my own. I buy them at the fair. I like fermented sauerkraut as well. I’m really wanting to start fermenting but need the materials.

  • Having trouble remembering the last time I consumed anything fermented. Hmmm. How odd. Sooooo, it is obviously past time to ferment something, buy something fermented, and consume same!

    Used to eat quite a bit of sauerkraut, but haven’t even had any of that lately. Thanks for the question! It has me really wondering why I have seemingly quit consuming fermented goods!

  • I just started this year and have made picked Asian pears, your dilly beans, garlic dill pickles, bread and butter pickles, and pickled asparagus and pickled peppers!

  • I absolutely love spicy food. I made your dilly beans a couple years ago and this year I think I’ll add a few habaneros to spice them up a bit. I can’t wait to see the book. Thanks for the giveaway.

  • I’m still pretty new to ferments. So far I’ve made sauerkraut and yogurt. So many more things to try though!

  • I’ve made yogurt and sauerkraut. I have a large jar for some upcoming kimchi. Our family LOVES dilly beans so I want to try fermented ones and see how they taste. Yum.

  • I have not been fermenting long, about a year and a half, my absolute favorite is kim chi. All kinds, but particularly made with wild greens.

  • I’ve NEVER made fermented foods before but I am a HUGE fan of sauerkraut and kimchi. I would like to say that I share them but I usually end up eating the whole jar myself every time. I would love to learn more and gain the confidence to try fermenting myself by the cabbage season starts up again!

  • I’m addicted to sauerkraut and usually have a jar on the go so I never run out. My latest batch was spiked with some of the fermented hot sauce I made in the fall.

  • Kombuchas, kimchis, mustards, and yogurts come and go, but my sourdough starter is my mainstay. It’s provided countless hours of wonder, excitement, maintenance work, and frustration. I look forward to baking every weekend.

  • We always have a jar or two of homemade kimchi in our fridge. Fermented beet and turnip pickles are another favorite in our house.

  • Kimchi! I’ve made my own for some years following the recipe/method in Sandor Katz’s Wild Fermentation, then found some other great versions in the cookbook Koreatown.

  • Definitely kimchi! I haven’t dipped my toe into actually making it yet, though. Hopefully that will change!

  • Since I’m just starting on fermentation, do you recommend to start with the first book or to go straight to the fiery ferments?

    1. It really depends on what you want to make. Both books offer a really good and in-depth introduction to fermentation. So you should get the book that you feel is going to serve you better!

  • I sporadically make kimchi and sauerkraut, but am a winemaker by trade. Would love to experiment with more vegetable ferments, wild and not.

  • The last two summers I’ve made some awesome fermented hot sauce. It’s got that lovely lactic acid tang and now Tabasco just tastes like vinegar to me 🙂

  • My sourdough is a constant in my fridge. I have had one for nearly 7 years. I have dabbled in yogurt (but only I eat it, so I don’t make it as much as I used to), sauerkraut (YUM!) and want to make kombucha this summer.

  • I love making kimchi and fermented salsa at the end of the summer, it’s the best way to use up the last bumper crop before winter.

  • My favorite ferment these days is curtido. Cabbage, carrots, onions, oregano, chili flakes, and cumin–yum! I really like the look of this new book. Their first book is one of my fermentation Bibles!

  • I enjoy canning and making things from scratch but I have not delved into the art of fermentation. Beer and wine are my favorites 🙂 But I really eat a lot of Greek yogurt.

  • We’re not a kimchi household, but we’re definitely doing different versions of sauerkraut. I did a fermented mustard that’s been wildly popular amongst family and friends. I’m looking forward to doing hot sauces (as well as chile powder mixes) this summer. I like making dairy ferments (yogurt, sour cream, creme fraiche, cheese), but we don’t go through the easy ones quickly enough and I don’t often have enough time for the longer ones like cheese. I need to get back into baking, and eventually do my own kombucha.

  • Kimchi! There is a booth at the farmers market that sells vegetarian kimchi that I love! I have bought jars in the past for friends and family, who also love it. It actually prompted me to buy my own masontops fermentation kit, but the recipes are pretty lacking. This book looks like it has a great selection. Thanks for sharing!

  • KIMCHI. Makes my mouth water to type the word. I have been buying it, but would love to make my own. My son grows a variety of very hot peppers I’d like to try. Thanks for this offer.

  • I think my favorite ever home-fermented achievement was a spicy, bubbly fermented pico de gallo — so delicious, and excellent to share. Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

  • I love fermented things like sauerkraut and kimchi. My Dad taught me to make yogurt and a lemon/lime achar that he learned from his Mom — would love to learn some new things!

  • The comment about how to ferment with just a jar and a plastic bag really put me over the edge from considering this book to coveting it. I have been wanting to get into fermenting for a while, but am currently on a limited income. I love eating fermented things, and i love love love spicy things, so all in all this book was made for me. Thank you for sharing this book and others like it on your site, as well as your own instructions and recipes, so that i have a reliable place to start.