i was surprised how much interest my previous fermenting post got - and i am happy to say it seems to have inspired a few bits of fermenting out there. it may be that people loved the photos - which did look great i agree. but i have made a few schoolboy errors i'm afraid. the main one is not paying enough attention to the waterline and for whatever reason which have been multiple i have had a few jars go mouldy because i have had things poke above it. i thought i'd better confess in the public domain so took a photo of the latest one - which i think looks rather beautiful. but it did remind me that the flip side of creativity is failure. if you can't fail you won't try stuff and you don't learn. but i have pressed through and now successfully made the following ferments...
sourdough - have been doing that for 5 years now and fortunately managed to keep sourcing flour in the mayhem created by lockdown and everyone starting to make bread
radishes - got that one right first time - see here
kraut - second time lucky though not sure what i eat it with - any suggestions?
basil beets - my sons have suggested this as a future DJ name for me! - recipe here btw
mixed veg - probably my least favourite
carraway carrots and turnips - turnips are surprsingly wonderful fermented (these and the other veg ones above are all from
farmer's cheese - this is not actually fermented but is in sandor's book which is my excuse both for trying it and including it here - particularly satisfying was turning it into paneer for my own palek paneer curry
lemon pickle - also not fermented but is kind of close being a pickle?!
and this weeks new one has been yoghurt - which is amazing - see below
and the failure i have not repeated yet is peppers - need to retry
so this week's adventure has been yoghurt and i followed the sandor katz recipe in wild fermentation. it needed 8 hours to yog rather than 4 (is that a verb?!). and i used a dried culture from bulgaria which took a while to come in the post - i didn't realise you could simply use some yoghurt to kickstart it. i don't have such luxuries as a yoghurt maker so used a cooler/coolbox with hot water in and that did the trick.
having made it i then drained one through a cheesecloth for an hour to thicken it into greek yoghurt and that is incredible. so i think i'll do the same with my second jar. it tasted delicious with fruit and some homemade granola after cycling 26 miles this morning - i can never bring myself to buy granola as it sees so over priced for essentially some toasted oats with bits in!
the photo album fermenting has a few more photos in now though i have realised i must add some of the sourdough which i kind of take fro granted having made bread for several years now but it probably the best ferment i make actually...
so there you go - that's where it's got to in my lockdown fermenting adventures.
the flipped classroom is a simple idea. you use technology to make available content for individuals to access for their learning before you meet and/or afterwards – this might be video, reading, presentations and so forth. but when you gather as a group you use the time or the bulk of it for interaction and dialogue. i've taken this approach to teaching online.
this got me trawling back through blog posts from 2005 and 2006 and i found this post and set of questions i posed wondering about the implications of the online environment for church. well here we are 14 years later asking the same questions...
can we imagine... church beyond gathering? church beyond once a week? church as always on connectivity to christ and one another? church where community is the content? theology and resources of church being open source? church valuing the wisdom of the crowd rather than the knowledge of the expert? our church/spirituality being easily found by seekers because we tag it that way? an ethos of low control and collaboration? an economy of gift? church as spaces for creative production and self publishing? church as providers of resources for spiritual seekers and tourists?
at cms we have open days and evenings coming up on may 19 and june 15 for our pioneer training.
regardless of where the lockdown has got to we will be open and running all of our pioneer training options next (academic) year. we're already teaching online through zoom which i am enjoying - i like new challenges. it will be nice to meet physically and blend the two when things ease up but you can do a lot at a distance.
the kind of training we offer helps students' imagination. we hope that if they train with us they are able to think for themselves, be creative, start things, be resourceful, build community, find connection points locally, draw on resources in terms of theology and mission but apply them to where they are. and i think now more than ever the kind of approach we have is ideal for the moment we are in.
a reflection/piece of liturgy i wrote for grace last night. i have been struck looking at the stories of the resurrection appearances how grief and hope are often close together, and how often god’s absence and presence are experienced in the same stories. perhaps this has something to say to us in our own experience at the moment - many of us have felt god is far away and many of us have been reassured by god’s presence.
The women arrive at the empty tomb God is nowhere Suddenly Jesus meets them God is now here
Mary weeping with loss in the garden God is nowhere The gardener speaks her name God is now here
The disciples afraid in a locked room God is nowhere Then Jesus appears God is now here
Thomas refusing to believe God is nowhere He touches Jesus wounds God is now here
The disciples fish all night without a catch God is nowhere “Throw your net over the right side” God is now here
Peter shattered when the cock crows God is nowhere A healing conversation on the beach God is now here
Two disciples downcast on the Emmaus Rd God is nowhere They recognised him in the breaking of bread God is now here
i'll be taking part in a webinar on reimagining church in a couple of weeks. it's pitched at church leaders and the idea is to share some of the learning from creative people in fresh expressions and pioneering for whom reimagining church is part of what they do to connect with groups of people outside the church or in different cultural spaces. anyway seems a great idea and looking forward to it. feel free to leave me a comment if you have any examples as i'd love to be able to chip in both conceptual things and practical ideas. one of the things we talked about in a pre-webinar conversation was low level innovation and how it is helpful to have really ordinary sorts of ideas as they seem doable rather than outlandish ones. personally i like both kinds! and feel free to join in...
grace is next saturday and will be available anywhere in the world rather than just ealing of course. here's the blurb...
We had planned for May Grace to be outdoors in a woodland but that isn’t going to happen for obvious reasons! So what we are suggesting is that we have a zoom gathering online at 8pm on May 9 - GODISNOWHERE Grace Open Mic.
Here’s how it will work:
We’d like to invite all of you to create or make something to do with faith in the midst of lockdown. That could be an expression of the difficulty of it, of where you have found moments of grace in it, it could be to do with God’s presence or absence in it (NOWhere or NOwhere). If you need a start point the stories of the resurrection appearances contain many of these emotions and themes.
And it can be any art form - poem, prayer, photo, sound recording or whatever. We encourage you to make or pen something rather than share someone else’s art. If you don’t create anything please still come along. There’s no pressure through we hope some people will or it will be very short! Thanks to Richard Passmore for the title which he says he first saw via Pete Rollins.
If you would like to join us please email [email protected] and we will email you an invitation. We were going to post the link on the website but have been informed that is not a good way to do it and Zoom have changed their security.
It would be really helpful to know ahead of time who is participating so email to let us know and we can then compile an order and work out any technical challenges. Contributions are welcome from all ages.
After the Easter vigil people hung out for a while chatting and drinking which seemed to work well so the Grace cafe will be open at the end though you will need to provide your own drinks and snacks! If anyone wants to DJ via Facebook or instagram let us know and we can add the link.
i have been blogging for a decade or more in fairly eclectic fashion. i am an advocate for pioneers, lover of all things creative, an explorer of faith in relation to contemporary culture, a photographer and writer. explore the presences section below to find me in other spaces