The Year of the Ferment

“Last year, we canned. This year, we ferment." Bonnie Wolf told NPR listeners this morning as part of her commentary on what to expect on your plate in 2013. Kimchi and fermented vegetables are trending up.

We thought it would be fun to share some recipes that will put you ahead of the trend.  Whether you are going to a New Year's Eve cocktail party or you're simply staying at home playing games and munching on snacks while trying to stay up until midnight, these snacks and perhaps a "crocktail" will add fun to your evening.

 Pickle in a Blanket

Pickle in a Blanket

  • 3–4 whole fermented dill pickles, your own or a brand such as Bubbies
  • 2–3 oz chevre or cream cheese, room temperature
  • 3–4 slices of a naturally cured pastrami

Lay out the slices of pastrami (the blankets) on a cutting board. Spread a thin layer of chevre across one half of the pastrami.  Lay a pickle on the edge of each “blanket” and roll the pickle in it.  Slice into rounds.

Smokey Dates

This hors d’oeuvre speaks for itself.  Sweet, smoky, tangy!

  •  6 medjool dates
  •  Smokey kraut (plain kraut works nicely as well)
  •  Optional: 12 small thin slices of a flavorful aged hard cheese

Slice the dates lengthwise. Remove pit, if needed. If using cheese slice to fit inside the date. Stuff dates with cheese and top with kraut, first squeezing out any excess brine; otherwise omit the cheese and tuck a bit of kraut in each date.

Kimchi Mary

This is quite delicious, especially when made with a brine from a hot and spicy kimchi.

  • Kimchi brine
  • Fresh lemon
  • Vodka
  • Salt
  • Pickled  veggie skewer

Mix kimchi brine, juice of one lemon, vodka.

Rub lemon round rim of glass, then dip rim of glass in salt.  Pour in kimchi vodka mix.  Garnish with skewered fermented veggies.