Ferment: the fermentation workshop and store
Founded by local fermentation experts Isabelle and Robert, Ferment has been open in the market’s restaurant zone for two years. As big fans of buying local and the zero-waste movement, they purchase their ingredients directly from farmers and most of their products are made from “ugly” vegetables. Fermentation is a powerful ally in the fight against food waste: it prolongs the shelf life of foods while preserving their freshness and nutritional value. The technique makes no distinction between trimmings, perfect specimens and ugly vegetables – it all goes in! It makes perfect sense for Ferment to be at Jean-Talon Market: the company supports the circular economy and allows people to enjoy the harvest for longer. Home fermentation is an ancient technique that used to be fairly well known in Quebec. For the last few years, it has been making a big comeback on our shelves, and it is increasingly common in restaurants and specialty groceries across the province. Essentially, lacto-fermentation is the salt-based fermentation of vegetables. Also known as lactic fermentation, it is fermentation done by lactic bacteria, with “lacto” referring to lactic acid.
Ferment’s products go beyond classics like sauerkraut and kimchi with some out-of-the-ordinary products. There are all kinds of fermented foods, such as “mulatto” cauliflower, a delicious hot sauce, seasonal asparagus, garlic scapes and the company’s exceptional ginger carrots. They also offer tomato sauce, zaatar radishes and even vegan kimchi. Always on the lookout for new flavours and seasonal produce, Isabelle and Robert will delight and amaze your palate! To see all their products and points of sale, visit their website. The passionate entrepreneurs also give regular workshops at their store on Bélanger Street, teaching the public all about the various types of fermentation. If you’re interested, the store presents an introductory workshop and several more specialized ones, for example on kimchi, kefir or kombucha. Their mission: to demystify the lacto-fermentation process, raise awareness about food waste and promote local and seasonal shopping. Choose and sign up for workshops here. The shop also sells fermentation kits and a variety of tools – everything you need whether you’re just getting started or already an expert. Ferment is present at Jean Talon Market every weekend. Give it a try, and you’ll be converted!
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