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Sep 182013
 

On Monday it was time to remove the Kompostowisko at the Copernicus Science Center. Hopefully soon the organizers will share some event photos.

Sep 152013
 

Yesterday on the way to Pixxe/Jadalnia Warszawa/Slow Food Youth’s Jam Session, Iza and I were unable to get into the Finskie Domki (Finnish Homes) neighborhood by car because there was a giant Soldariność protest blocking all entrances. The driver dropped us off on Ujazdowski above Trasa Lazienkowska. So there we stood with two enormous crates plus two other bags — easily 50 or 60 kg of fruit, sugar and kitchen equipment. The driver suggested we get Solidarity people to help. We tried asking people but they just streamed by; it didn’t seem to be working.

jamsessionday_01_solidarnosc_DSC01138

Crowds make me nervous –  so I lifted may arms and started screaming, in English, “Please help us!” and also “Proszę mi pomóc” (Please help me! — at the moment I forgot how to say Please help us!) Finally four guys stopped, listened, picked up the boxes and carried them ,5km right to the house. HURRAH!

jamsessionday_02_helpers_DSC01146

JAM SESSION IN PICTURES

Sep 132013
 

Today we collected 20 kg of fruit for tomorrow’s JAM SESSION

  • 2 kg cornelian cherry (dereń)
  • 5 kg apples (jabłek)
  • 10 kg pears (gruszki)
  • 1 kg plums (śliwki)
  • 2 kg grapes (winogrona)
  • 1 kg aronia (aronia)
  • 2 kg elderberry (czarne bez)
  • 250 g blackberries (jeżyna), which were eaten on the spot

Click on the pics for a little story.

Sep 132013
 

For a few years now, I’ve been making tempeh because I couldn’t find it for sale in Poland. For the last month or so, I’ve been making it and selling it to the Kooperatwya Dobrze here in Warsaw. This week I documented the process to to show people how tempeh is produced, and also just to assess how much time and money it costs to make.

Making tempeh starts Monday night and ends Thursday morning.

MONDAY

Crack and soak the beans

Of course we start with organic, GMO-free soybeans. 1000 kg of soybeans makes about 1600 g of tempeh. Interesting, huh? That means that 37,5% of tempeh is — well, what is that white stuff exactly? It’s the mycelia of fungi Rhizopus oligosporus and Rhizopus oryzae! (I apologize for referring to then as bacteria and mold in the past.)

The first step is to separate the husks from the beans. The husks must be removed because Rhizopus oligosporus/oryzae cannot penetrate the husk. The husks are separated with a loosely-set grain mill, which cracks them and in so doing removes the husk.  If you don’t have a grain mill, you’ll have to remove them by hand after the beans have soaked or you could try to find soybeans that are already de-husked. I have not yet been able to find these in Poland (organic non-GMO de-hulled soybeans).

The beans are put into water. At this time, some of the husks float to the top and can be skimmed off.

The beans are left to soak overnight.

TUESDAY

Wash the beans

By morning, the beans have expanded and more husks have floated to the top. These husks are removed. The next step is to partially cook the beans — this means about 30 minutes. As they cook, a foam forms and yet more husks rise to the top and are removed. As you can see, removing the husks is he beans are placed in a colander.

Dry the beans

The beans are spread out on a flat surface on clean lint-free cotton material, such as pillowcases or sheets. It takes at least 4 hours for the beans to dry. Wet beans prohibit the growth of Rhizopus oligosporus/oryzae and encourage other kinds of growth — the kind we don’t want. So it is important for the beans to be completely dry.

Inoculate and pack the beans

By the evening, the beans are ready to be inoculated. All 1000g of beans are placed in a big pot or bowl. To this we add 2 Tablespoons of Rice Vinega and 2 teaspoons of Rhizopus oligosporus/oryzae starter. Any kind of vinegar can be used, just make sure the acidity is no greater than 5% acidity. I once used white Polish vinegar (acidity 10%) and killed the spores. Vinegar creates an acidic environment in which other fungi and bacteria cannot grow.
Next we pack about 500g of the beans into 1 gallon-sized / 3-liter-sized zip-locked bags. The bag has already been punctured with many tiny holes spaced about 1 cm / .5 inch apart. By using zip lock bags, the tempeh can be removed without destroying the bag, and so the bags can be reused many times.

This step takes about 30 minutes.

Incubate the beans

The bags are placed on some sort of rack that has holes or space to create airflow. I use a shelf from Ikea and a rack for drying cookies. These are placed in a box, or some other insulated space with a light bulb — approximatey 40-60 watts usually generates enough heat. We need a fairly constant temperature of between 26-30 C. Lately, I have been using a cabinet in my desk. It’s painted black and does an excellent job holding the heat. The tempeh goes on the top shelf and the light on the bottom. The tempeh is not placed directly under the bulb where it is very hot.

WEDNESDAY

The beans must “cook” for 24-36 hours between 26-30 C. The temperature should be monitored during this time. I no longer use a thermometer (because mine is broken) so I had to develop my Temperature Sense. In this case,  the door is nearly closed the first 8 hours and open the rest of the time. It is better to err on the cool side. If the temperature is too high, the spores are killed and the tempeh is ruined. It’s important to have air flow around the tempeh.

THURSDAY

The tempeh is done. Each 500g bag of soybeans yields about 820g of tempeh. Removing and sectioning the tempeh takes about 30 minutes. The tempeh is then delivered to the co-op Thursday afternoon.

 

Sep 102013
 
JAM SESSION - Jam from Wild Fruit

JAM SESSION – Jam from Wild Fruit

JAM SESSION : Niech będzie dżem (english below)

Zrób dżem z dzikich owoców!

Pixxe i SFY Warszawa zapraszają na wspólne dżemowanie!

Wydarzenie będzie miało bardzo lokalny wymiar, ponieważ będziemy przetwarzać wyłącznie owoce zebrane na terenie Warszawy.

Warsztat poprowadzi Jodie Baltazar, artystka i animatorka, zajmująca się różnorodnymi projektami z pogranicza jedzenia/sztuki/miejskiego ogrodnictwa.

KIEDY:sobota, 14.09 12.00
GDZIE: Osiedle Jazdów, Jazdów 10/6 (za ambasadą niemiecką, przy przedszkolu) Finskie Domki
WSTĘP: Nie ma opłaty za wstęp, za to każdy będzie mógł wykupić swój słoik dżemu za 4 złote (czy ile możesz)

Wydarzenie odbędzie się w ramach inicjatywy Otwarty Jazdów: https://www.facebook.com/events/390770171051502/, zaś pod adresem Jazdów 10/6 mieści się “Ogród na pTAK!”, który prowadzą Ptaki Polskie i Sie-Je w mieście.

JAM SESSION! LET THERE BE JAM!

Make jam from ‘wild’ fruit

Pixxe and Slow Food Youth Warsaw invite you to collaborate jam-making!

This jam will be superlocal — all of the fruit will be collected from trees and bushes growing right here in Warsaw.

WHEN: Saturday, September 14, 12 noon
WHERE: Jazdów 10/6 – next to the German embassy in the Finnish Homes
There’s no cost to join, but we ask a small donation for each jar of jam to cover the cost of the event. (4 PLN or what you can afford)
The event is held as part of the Open Jazdów initiative, in the space run by “Polish Birds” (Ptaki Polskie) and Sow it in the City (Sie-je w mieście) at Jazdów 10/6