At Ballymaloe Cookery School we have been running fermentation courses for the last 5 years. For the first course we did, we were a little ahead of the game and had only 1 booking, however now a fermentation class is a stable part of our yearly schedule, with 4 classes a year.
About 2 years ago we ditched our delicious but sugary homemade lemonade which past student will remember we made every day to be drunk at lunch. Now our new fermentation shed is the place where the water kefir we put on the tables is made every day.
Fermentation has also become an important part of our 12 Week Certificate course. Our 12 Week students get a lecture on Fermentation as one of their Wednesday Lectures, but also get to attend a Fermetation workshop one evening, learning in more detail about saeurkraut, Kefir, Kombucha and much more besides. Indeed with a new course outside students can do a fermentation workshop with Penny.
The new fermentation shed provides a place to try out all the experiments in fermenting that we are trying at the cookery school. When you walk into the shed you will hear a silent hiss and crackle as the carbon dioxide slowly escapes from many kilner jars.
Underneath the counter you will find our half whiskey barrel with our 40L Kombucha brew and our mammoth SCOBY, which covers the surface. Every 10 days this produces a new harvest of Kombucha to be given exciting flavours in a second ferment and then bottled up ready for sale in the shop.
Student can come out in the evening to see what is being done and to sample some of the new fermented flavours being created.
We hope this is just the begining of our fermented journey.