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Get Cultured: Fermentation Workshop at SoFAB

by Stacy Coco

Tara Whitsitt knows when to mold 'em. This Saturday, the Southern Food and Beverage Museum (SoFAB) co-hosts a fermentation workshop alongside Edible New Orleans. The Get Cultured will be lead by Whitstiff, the creator of Fermentation on Wheels.


Fermentation on Wheels is a traveling community dedicated to providing free food education all from the comfort of a school bus. This solar powered vehicle houses a fully equipped kitchen as well as a workshop space.


“I took on the project after a series of dreams about driving a bus and fermenting food on it, after which I had trouble sleeping,” Whitsitt said. “So I began planning for a trip and working on a mission to teach and spread the word about the importance of micro-agriculture and preparing fermented foods.”


Whitsitt will execute “how-to” classes while sharing knowledge, culture, and building community.


“My hope is to encourage others to embrace the unprecedented openness and generosity of others, celebrate our peculiarities, and furthermore realize that our fuel extends way past ourselves. I'm trying to inspire people with the potluck lifestyle,” stated Whitsitt.


SoFAB Operations Manager Kelsey Parris said Whitsitt contacted Edible New Orleans in hopes of finding a place to set up the workshop, and SoFAB was the the perfect candidate.


“We happily offered our space because it is an exciting, interesting subject matter, and we believe our members and the community will be interested in learning more about starter cultures and fermentation processes,” Parris said.


SoFAB’s Culinary Library will be the central location for the workshop, Parris noted.


“We always have a great response in "how-to" classes, so we're looking forward to having Fermentation on Wheels here to do another,” said Parris.


Alongside the fermentation lessons, Whitstiff will discuss starter cultures, including sourdough starter, kefir, and kombucha. Attendees may bring cultures of their own, as well as bring an empty jar and take a culture home. Tara will also prepare a wild ferment with seasonal NOLA ingredients.


The workshop is Saturday, February 15, at 1 p.m. in front of the SoFAB Culinary Library and Archive (1609 O. C. Haley Blvd). This event is free and open to the public.


Correction, February 16: Tara Whitsitt's last name was spelled incorrectly in the first version of the article. 

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