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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fermenting Foods (Idiot's Guides) Paperback – April 3, 2012

4.6 out of 5 stars 188 customer reviews

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  • The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fermenting Foods (Idiot's Guides)
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  • Fermented Vegetables: Creative Recipes for Fermenting 64 Vegetables & Herbs in Krauts, Kimchis, Brined Pickles, Chutneys, Relishes & Pastes
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  • Ball Wide-Mouth Plastic Storage Caps, 8-Count
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Product Details

  • Series: Idiot's Guides
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: ALPHA (April 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1615641505
  • ISBN-13: 978-1615641505
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.7 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (188 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #36,104 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fermenting Foods is a "Must Own" for several categories of people. If you are wanting to live a healthier and more vibrant life, then this book is a must. If you are a homesteader and you want to more efficiently and cost-effectively store the product of your homestead, then this book is a must. If you are like me - an Off Off-Grid farmer - and you want to preserve food without the necessity of heat and/or freezing, then this book is a must. If you want to keep alive the living enzymes, vitamins, and other beneficial pro-biotics in your food, then this book is a must. I can think of no other book on the market that has everything you need to know RIGHT NOW about Fermenting Foods besides Wardeh Harmon's excellent book. I received mine and immediately started reading through the processes and recipes. As I write this, the peppers and tomatoes and onions are days from being ready to harvest, and I am studying Wardeh's lacto-fermented salsa recipes so that I can make the most of what I get from my garden. The book is well-written, expertly edited, and easy to follow. Even if you've never lacto-fermented any foods in your life, you can do it with this book. I can tell you now that my root cellar will be swelling with delicacies later this summer, and it's all thanks to Wardeh and this book. Thank you Wardeh for your work!

Michael Bunker - author of Surviving Off Off-Grid
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Format: Paperback
I went to the bookstore to look through these books in person, sat down with a nice cuppa joe and flipped through them for over an hour. The result was this book may have some good info, but I found 2 other books to be better put together for my taste: The very thorough book by Sandor Katz "The Art of Fermentation" and the more recipe styled and very pictoral book by Alex Lwein "Real Food Fermentation". Between the two of them you really get all you need. The idiots guide was ok, I really was not impressed by it to be honest, especially when the other two have been so wonderful. The reference guide in the back of all of them was great. Except the idiot's guide had good info on where to get starter cultures.

I suggest, even if you buy online, to go to your local bookstore (call first to make sure they have these books!) and flip through them. That may make up your mind.

Happy Fermenting!
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Format: Paperback
*** I wrote this a while back and I've decided to update my review. My intial frustration was because of the lack of a whey resource but now we ferment our own Kefir and use that for making our own whey. This is a great primer book for ferment and helps bring you into this great world that leads to better health and wellness. I recommend it as a buy. I have left my original comments fully in tack ****

This book was purchased for me as a gift because I had begun fermenting foods for improved health and enjoyment.

The author has an easy, flowing writing style that makes the book easy to go through. Using this book, you will gain a good background on fermenting techniques.

I guess if I was to point out one flaw in the book that was a source of frustration and limited the overall usability of an otherwise very good book, it would be the assumption that we could use her "whey" starter for all the recipes. That's a problem because the state that I live in (Georgia) currently treats raw milk (and anything fermented) on the same level as nuclear waste. Until some laws are changed, raw milk is illegal and farmer markets can not sell anything that is fermented for fear of state officials rushing in to save us from such evil dangers. I did enjoy a wonderful naturally fermented Root Beer beverage at a market before the poor guy was shut down.

Unfortunately, the author utilizes her special whey starter in every recipe so you have to adjust all the printed recipes in the book accordingly to use it. Not taking into account those who can't get or don't want to create their own whey starter pack is the main flaw of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fermenting Foods"

With that stated, I still think this is a good book and I'm glad that I have it. It is well done and, other than the whey starter shortfall, is a wonderful resource to have on hand.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love this book! Wardeh is very thorough in her ecourse classes and her brand new book is no exception. There are so many interesting tips and tidbits included - it is a joy to read. There is truly something for everyone. Some super simple recipes that caught my eye are Honey Kombucha (with wildflower honey), Spinach Sticks (fermented spinach stalks), Fig Butter (using dried figs), Spicy Cilantro Pesto (yumm!), Orange Cream Kefir Smoothie (using dairy kefir or yogurt), and probiotic Lemonade (using whey) to name a few. If you are familiar with Wardeh's blog you will find a lot of your favorites in one handy hold-in-your-hand place as well..........Sourdough starter for pancakes, bread, waffles, crepes, english muffins, and Chocolate Sourdough Cake, simple cheeses, relishes, chutneys, hummus, plum sauce, and more. If fermenting foods is new for you this book definitely has you covered and then some:)
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I joined Wardeh's online class a few months ago, mainly for the fermented food tips and recipes. I've enjoyed the class thoroughly and gotten so much out of it, and this book is on that same high level of quality. It's a great combination of common-sense, intuitive and easy-to-understand tips, along with fascinating science and technical information.

I've been reading it from the beginning, and really enjoying all the scientific information about fermented foods and how these processes increase nutrition and flavour, and also how these ways of preserving connect us all to our ancestors' ways of life.

Some of the recipes are familiar from her course- I have made fabulous sauerkraut from her recipe, and also several batches of chutneys which were a big hit even with people who don't normally like cultured foods. I've also been successfully making yogurt, water kefir, and more from her course, and it looks like this book has recipes and ideas to take my fermentations to another level. I'm looking forward to delving in to the new variations and flavour combinations that the book offers, and I am confident that they will come out great!
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