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The 2015 Boston Fermentation Festival speaker series includes an amazing roster of fermentation experts speaking on various topics throughout the fest. Join us in the commercial kitchen at the Boston Public Market!

speakers series



Cheryl Sternman Rule is the author of Yogurt Culture: A Global Look at How to Make, Bake, Sip, and Chill the World's Creamiest, Healthiest Food (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015) and the founder of Team Yogurt, a website and online community devoted to everything yogurt ( An award-winning food writer and author, as well, of the 2012 cookbook Ripe: A Fresh, Colorful Approach to Fruits and Vegetables, Cheryl has been writing professionally for newspapers, magazines, and websites since 2004. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, Women’s Health, Cooking Light, Sunset, Vegetarian Times, the San Jose Mercury News, Edible Silicon Valley, The Kitchn, Serious Eats, and many more; and in several books published by the American Heart Association and the EatingWell Media Group. Cheryl is the also the voice behind the food blog 5 Second Rule, winner of both Saveur Magazine’s Readers’ Choice Award for Best Food Blog in the writing category (2014) and the International Association of Culinary Professionals’ Award for Best Culinary Blog (2012). 


Amanda Feifer writes about food fermentation of all kinds on her blog, and penned the forthcoming cookbook Ferment Your Vegetables (Fair Winds Press, October 2015). When she's not concocting crazy vats of bubbly things in the kitchen or ranting against the use of anti-bacterial soaps, she's doing what she loves most: teaching people to make their own fermented foods, from kimchi and kefir to kombucha and koji. She lives in South Philly with her husband, Jake, and their rambunctious pit bull pup, Laika.





Donna Schwenk is a best selling author of Cultured Food for Life and her latest book Cultured Food for Health. She is the founder of, and has a weekly radio show Cultured Food Life with Donna Schwenk on She served for 10 years as the Kansas City Chapter leader for Weston Price Foundation, a worldwide organization made up of people dedicated to restoring nutrient-dense food to the human diet through education, research, and activism. Donna teaches classes around the country to open people’s eyes to the power of cultured foods, which dramatically changed her health and the health of her family when she began making and eating them in 2002. She and her work have been featured on radio and television—including two PBS specials, Daily Mail, and in magazines including Energy Times, Vegetarian Times, and Mother Earth News.

Kirsten and Christopher Shockey got their start in fermenting foods, first on in their home, and then with their farmstead food company (Mellonia Farm), where they created over forty varieties of cultured vegetables and krauts. When they realized their passion was for the process, they chose to focus on teaching the art of fermenting vegetables. They still experiment with new recipes, help others set up in-house or farmstead “fermentories”, teach classes at their farm and host small farm workshops. 


They live on a 40-acre hillside homestead in the Applegate Valley of Southern Oregon, where they have cultivated a handmade life for the last 15 years. Their days are a chaotic combination of parenting, day jobs, writing and navigating whatever the climate and the rural lifestyle throws their way. 


Every day is different. Christopher and Kirsten can be found watering, preserving harvests, making cheese, planting trees, chopping firewood, mucking stalls, hiking, dreaming up the next project, reading, or dancing on the porch under the stars.  At the end of the day they go to bed exhausted and knowing life is good.

Amanda Feifer

Donna Schwenk

Kirsten Shockey

Cheryl Sternman Rule


speakers will start on the hour


10am   Karen Solomon

11am    Amanda Feifer

12pm   competitive PickleOff!

1pm    Kirsten Shockey  

2pm    Donna Schwenk

3pm    Cheryl Sternman Rule & Geoff Lukas

Food writer and Yogurt Culture author Cheryl Sternman Rule and Boston chef Geoff Lukas will share the stage to discuss yogurt and its fermented dairy cousins. Between the two of them, they've researched, traveled, and cooked the recipes from a wide array of regions across the globe where fermented dairy features prominently. Come ready to taste, learn, and discover new ways to play with milk and yogurt in your own kitchen.

Karen Solomon has been a well-published food writer for over a decade. In addition to the Asian Pickles series, she’s also author of Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It and Can It, Bottle It, Smoke It (Ten Speed Press/Random House). Additionally, she’s the author of The Cheap Bastard’s Guide to San Francisco (Globe Pequot Press) and contributing author to Chow! San Francisco Bay Area: 300 Affordable Places for Great Meals & Good Deals(Sasquatch Press) and a former contributing editor to Zagat Survey: San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants.


Her edible musings on DIY cooking, the restaurant scene, sustainable food programs, culinary trends, food history, and recipe development have appeared in, Fine Cooking, Prevention, Yoga Journal, Vegetarian Times, Food52, Organic Style, the San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Magazine, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, and elsewhere, all of which showcase the diversity of her word-wrangling plate.

Karen Solomon

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