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Baba, which are rum-soaked yeast cakes, were a featured dessert on a party menu. I first made them while working with my chef Jean Michel. Together we turned them into savarin - a ring moulded variety with basically the same characteristics as the traditional baba....

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Sarah Owens – Gypsy Baker

I first met baker Sara Owens through my blog. Since both of us live in New York City, she invited me over one afternoon to her apartment to join her in baking some sourdough loaves. I still remember that conversation. I also remember how it seemed her own...

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Grape Must Bread

Recently I purchased a copy of Italian baker Matteo Festo's Natural Leavening. It's an insightful introduction to Italy's approach to natural sourdough baking. Below are photos of my attempt at one of his formulas using grape must. Along...

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The Japanese use a fermented grain called koji to make miso paste or sake. When I first found it offered at my local Japanese food market, bells went off, a voice yelling at me, "go home, make soy, sake or pickled vegetables." But honestly, it sat in my...

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Fermented Chili Sauce

Fermentation is my my passion. From beer to bread I've traveled its tributaries in search of the perfect harbors. One destination has been elusive; lactic fermented chili sauce. James Lahey introduced me to this wonderful creation. Trying to put my hand to a...

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