Maybe you might be asking WHERE can I find Edible Alchemy? Well, the answer is simple… practically everywhere! Bacteria, moulds and yeasts are all around the globe creating delicious foods for us to create, taste, and share … yet, that may still not answer your question…
As you may have read in our intro, Edible Alchemy CoLaboratory was created by two Canadian girls, Natalie and Alexis. As it stands now, we have two headquarters – one in Winnipeg, Canada and the other in Berlin, Germany.
The Microbial Circus tour has been created to bring the two of us back together – to explore new places in this great big world and collaborate with people and microbes of other food cultures.
Our first tour in 2015 deepened our knowledge of fermentation processes in eastern Europe. Our journey brought us to Leipzig, Germany to promote food waste education with Oikos at Leipzig Universitat and on to Hungary where we joined bacterial, and foraging forces with Collective Plant, the sustainability department of Central European University (CEU), as well as the rural permaculture initiative, The Salubrious Project where we did collaborative workshops using the local fruits, vegetables and herbs to create bubbly magic.
This year, 2016 – we tour with the theme, the Microbial Circus…
Come one, come all to the WACKY, WEIRD and WONDERFUL world of BUBBLES & FIZZ
the Microbial Circus is coming to town.
From exotic edibles of faraway places to the staggering diversity of bacteria throughout our own bodies.
- The microbe freak show
- Tips, tricks & contortions in bacteria taming
- Probiotic Flavour Powders
- Bubble & Fuzz Kino
-- We provide education through hands-on entertainment --
On this tour, Natalie flew to Berlin to meet with Alexis and we packed up our Bag-O-Ferments to travel with infinite bacteria to the lands we have been intrigued by and hosts who have inspired us to visit.
We first ventured to Croatia, hopped all around the Netherlands and closed the tour in late November in Iceland - where the rocky, icy topography and unique climactic conditions have produced distinct, regionally adapted fermented outcomes. What, you may ask, other than the hard alcohol Brennivín (also known as Black Death)? Why everything from the iconic skyr of course, to the more challenging Hakárl (fermented shark meat – which may take a couple swigs of Brennivin before to help you prep for the smell, and a couple more after for the pungent taste that follows).
Along the way we take avid interest in how people are interacting with their environments through fermentation. We are constantly looking at how we can support local food production, develop unique flavors, minimize food waste and promote traditional food skills.
As always, our approach is to produce edu-tainment to [re]present bacteria to our audience in a whole new and interactive way.
In this blog we will be mentioning some of the amazing partners we have connected with and also include links to some of the recipes we have collected along the way.
First Stop - Zagreb! We enjoyed a two-day intensive fermentation workshop where our host was also busy fermenting tibicos (water kefir) and shared with us some super unique flavours - some of our favourites being:
- Matcha + Lemon
- Bee pollen, honey, lemon
- few slices of banana with 1/2 tsp of true vanilla
- watermelon chunks and mint springs
- fenugreek, dash of cayenne pepper and juice of half an orange
Filled and fulfilled, we hopped on a train and traveled by land with our Bag-O-Ferments to Rotterdam and connected with Printroom where we presented a workshop in the lovely community gardens and continue to collaborate for an upcoming Netbook! We were happy to be introduced to a Smoked-Salt-Brussel-sprout Ferment.
In Amsterdam, the city of many canals, we connected with a kimchi specialist who is specializing in selling Onggi - a traditional Korean fermentation vessel. We picked up some variations on kimchi like this White Kimchi Recipe and Pink-chi!
Amsterdam is also the home of Micropia - The Microbe Museum - which was one of the most spectacular exhibits we have ever had the pleasure to enjoy. Very interactive, informative, and visually enticing!
We were also fortunate to join in a Zuursalon at the Mediamatic Headquarters for a presentation on koji (aspergilus-oryzae), and chat with a Sake-Samurei, microbiologists and other fermentation foodies.
Following the milk trend, we stopped over at an organic dairy farm in Hoogmade, NL where we sampled cheeses, meats and took home a jar of single-utter yogurt!
Then up, up, up into the wonders and fantastical lands of ICELAND! Not only were we able to sample the delights of fermented shark skin, but also stay on an organic farm called Vallanes were local, organic sour kraut is produced and we helped with the fermented product development of various products. If ever in Iceland, take the wander to visit their lovely cafe, and maybe even have the chance to sample some of the creations Edible Alchemy left behind to ferment!
Photo Cred: Sendy O Ganga
We even made sure to dry out some kombucha SCOBY's for some unique head-dresses for a part of our costume! Too many SCOBY's too? Check out our blog HERE to see what else you can do.