I love ferments!  Our gut has anywhere from 600-1000 different microbials working to keep us healthy.   We tend to do a lot of things that negatively impact these microbials – diet is one and antibiotics is another.   I don’t do antibiotics any more and am grateful that my youngest (12) has never had them and my oldest (14) hasn’t had them since we got her out of the hospital!!

But many of us have taken them over the years and they effect our gut balance for YEARS, some any say generations as we pass our gut issues on to our babies.

One thing we can do to help is to consume a variety of ferments.  There is NO need for expensive store bought probiotics.  Not only are they unnecessary and expensive but really don’t do the job.   Most store bought probiotics only have a few strains and that just isn’t very helpful.

Consuming an array of whole food probiotics, on the other hand, provides your body with the variety it needs to remain healthy.  Remember the bulk of our immune system is in our gut.

So, I’ll post about other probiotic options in the future but today I want to talk about kombucha.   Kombucha has been around for a long time, some report thousands of years.  I’m not sure about that but it’s been a long time🙂

It is a fermented tea that provides a variety of beneficial microbials and is a nice beverage alternative for soda.  It is also believed to have detoxification effects.  Pat from Heal Thyself, reminds everyone to be aware that kombucha can mobilize mercury, so to use caution if you have mercury fillings.  She talks more about the issue here.   I don’t have any fillings, so this hasn’t been an issue for me.  I am just able to enjoy a yummy, healthy drink!  Hopefully, that will be the case for you too!   If not, I’ll post about water kefir soon.  It is another fermented drink and it is not a problem for people with fillings.

I’ll post the recipe below but let’s look at some pictures now:

So, these are two batches that are ready to be harvested.  You’ll see the SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) on the top.  I have groovy positive statics on the side of the jar too🙂




This is a shot of just the SCOBYs.

I remove them from the jar and place in
a dish with about 2 cups of the made kombucha (for the next batch).



I like to do a secondary ferment.  Here is a picture of that:

                         Organic Mixed Berries

For the berry one, I use organic mixed frozen berries from Costco.  The lighter one in the picture uses fresh ginger (our Asian market sells this in bulk for pennies!).  I love this ‘ginger-ale’ type taste.  It’s delicious and you get all of the benefits of ginger. You can read more about those here.

In order to start making your own kombucha, you will need to find a SCOBY.   If you have a local group, you can post there.  Heal Thyself has a sharing cultures section.  You can check that out here.  I sell my extras at my site Anna’s Kefir Grains.  I charge as little as possible to cover shipping and time/supplies, etc.   There are other places that sell cultures too, you can just google.  I know Cultures for Health is another place you can check.

Here is the recipe that I send out with my SCOBYs.  It includes how to make the secondary ferment.

Kombucha Directions

You will receive your SCOBY with a bit of Kombucha (liquid), that’s important, don’t dump it.

1 gallon size, glass jar
1 tea towel, cloth napkin, dishtowel, etc.
1 large rubber band

Water (non-chlorinated)
1 cup sugar (I use organic to avoid GMO issues)
6 black, green or white tea bags (I use Twig Tea)
Mature kombucha (liquid)

  1. Warm several cups of water in a sauce pan, hot but less than boiling (If it boils, it’s fine)
  2. Add sugar and stir to dissolve
  3. Remove from heat and add tea bags
  4. Steep for 15-20 minutes
  5. Add this tea to your gallon jar
  6. Add additional COLD water (so that overall temp is cool-warm NOT hot)
  7. Stir to combine
  8. Lay your SCOBY on the top
  9. Pour the Kombucha liquid on top of the SCOBY
  10. Cover with towel and rubber band to secure (keep on counter, in cupboard, etc.)
  11. Check between 7 and 14 days to find the taste/sweetness you enjoy. (I harvest every 2 weeks)

When you are ready to harvest:

  1. Remove SCOBY, place in dish, add 1-2 cups of the mature kombucha
  2. Remove remaining kombucha, I strain this because there will often be yeast floating around.  That’s ok, great even but not so pleasant to slurp up🙂
  3. Bottle in jars of your choice and store in the refrigerator (**Or read below for 2nd ferment)
  4. Repeat steps above to start new batch.

**This is the time to do a secondary ferment, if you want “flavored” kombucha.  The possibilities are endless but here are three of my favorites:

Fill bottom of a quart jar with frozen, organic, mixed berries (about 2 inches up).  Fill jar with mature kombucha.  Leave on the counter for 2 days, strain and enjoy!

Add fresh, peeled and chopped ginger to a quart jar of mature kombucha and let sit out for 2 days.  This is a yummy “ginger ale” kombucha.

Pour an inch or two of organic grape juice in a quart jar, top off with mature kombucha and let sit out for 2 days. This reminds me of the old GT Dave’s Grape Divine Flavor!

New SCOBYs will grow ~ share with friends!


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Time to Talk about Hair

In my recent face/skin post I mentioned the waste land of skin products under the sink.  They were but a drop in the bucket compared to the number of shampoos and conditioners I have tried over the years!

I have curly hair and I live in the South.  So, instead of curls, I actually have FRIZZ.  I envy the people who are able to brush their hair leaving it smooth and shiny.  I can’t even imagine being able to do that!   I tried EVERY product from the cheapest store brand the most expensive “salon” brand and while some were better than others, nothing ever made my hair sing.

A big step in the right direction was reading the book “Curly Girl”.  I learned a lot about my hair with this book.  I learned that curly hair is often dry hair and that moisturized curls are less frizzy.  She also talks about not using shampoo and washing with conditioner.   Again, shampoo tends to dry.

As, with my skin, my hair product choices were effected by my desire for less chemicals and more natural products.  But natural shampoos did not work for my hair AT ALL!

What all of this means is that for over 2 decades I wore my hair in a bun!  Seriously.  Most people had no idea what my hair looked like under there.  But I’d still try to find the answer for my hair.

About a year ago, I discover Morrocco Method.  I’m not even sure where I first read about it but when I read at the site and saw the ingredients, I was impressed.  But I had been down this road many times before!  Still, I’m a sucker for new hair care products.  So, I placed an order.

After ONE wash, my hair was changed.   I couldn’t believe the difference.  Here are my “before” and “after” pictures, the difference is crazy!!  I cringe at the before picture but it really tells the story!

Before – May 2010 and After – July 2011

Not only is that 2010 hair scary but my skin!  That’s long before Living Libations read more about that here.

Short hair Feb 2012

Now, you may know that in January of 2012, I cut it all off!!!  I’d always had long hair, worn in a bun and I just wanted to shake it up for 2012.   I’m glad I cut it but I think I’ll be growing it back out before long.   I still use Morocco Method and am super grateful that they have a natural gel!!  I couldn’t find one of those anywhere.  Even the ones at the health food store had ingredients I didn’t like.  My short hair would do a poofy, frizzy, helmet thing that was quite frightening! With the gel, it’s MUCH better!!

Short or long, I’m so happy to have found these products!  I highly recommend them!!   I will warn you, though, they don’t lather.  I think that might freak people out a bit but often it’s the “lathering” ingredients that are questionable (sodium lauryl sulfate, for one).   But as soon as you see your hair, you won’t miss the lathering at all!!

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Kale Chips

I’ve been eating with an emphasis on raw food for about 4 years now.  I feel best with about 75-80% of what I eat being raw.  I’m not always there but it’s what works best for my body.   BUT I’d never made my own kale chips!

I have a bunch of kale in the garden and it’s already getting hot here so I decided it was time.  A local friend gave me her recipe and I altered the spices a bit.  I’m leaving her measurements, I tend to wing, not measure🙂  I also probably doubled this.

6 cups kale
1/4 to 1/2 cup cashews, soaked 4 hours  (discard soaking water)
4 Tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon favorite blend (I liberally sprinkled Trader Joe’s 21 Season Salute – great flavor!!)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon Himalayan Sea Salt
1 clove garlic

1. Remove stems from kale and tear or cut into big pieces. Rinse and spin in salad spinner (I didn’t do this because it was from my garden and wasn’t dirty). Place in large bowl.
2. Blend rest of ingredients until smooth. May need to add 1-2 T water or EVOO to blend  (I added water slowly and just watched the consistency)
3. Mix sauce and kale with yours hands until well coated.
4. Place on teflex trays at 115 for 6-8 hours.

It will shrink down so making a big batch makes a lot of sense.

Fresh Kale from the Garden



I started with fresh kale from the garden. I cut it with a knife, seemed easier than tearing.

Adding the sauce/seasoning





This is the paste after blending.  It’s smooth but still quite thick.

Kale is coated






Kale is completely coated.  Make sure all of the surface area is covered.  This was easier than it sounded.

Spread on the dehydrator sheet





Spread, in as thin a layer as possible, onto your dehydrator sheets.  Mine was still pretty thick but it was fine.  I just had to flip and spread out a bit as it was dehydrating.

Finished Kale Chips





Then it was done!  I would say it was closer to 10 hours but my layers were thick.




Here is lunch:

Raw nut pate with romaine from the garden and kale chips on the side – YUM!


It was easier and a lot tastier than I thought they would be.  I ended up giving my sister most of this batch to take with her on the trip home.  Tomorrow I’m going to make another batch while I still have a lot kale.

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Love Your Skin

I love my skin!!!  This is something I’d never thought I would say again.  So, to be saying it now, at 43, is pretty cool!   I actually had pretty good skin as a teen, some bumps here or there but nothing crazy.  I stopped wearing make-up in the 9th grade (I started in the 8th🙂 ) but decided, I just wanted to be me.  And, looking back, I could get away with it, I had good skin.  At the time, as teenagers tend to do, I found flaws but it was nothing  compared to what would hit me in my early 20s and last for almost 2 decades!

My skin became SUPER sensitive.  I still wasn’t wearing make-up and still don’t today,  but I developed rosacea.  My cheeks were constantly red, splotchy and would burn.  Not to mention I developed a strange rash on the side of my face.  Several dermatologists were  stumped.  They pulled out all of their normal (read toxic) tools to no avail.  So, I just decided that I needed to live with it and move on.   That wasn’t without some sadness and even some frustration at times but I did.

Then in the mid 90s, I started turning to more natural products.  I didn’t hold out much hope to help my skin but felt better about less chemicals.  It takes only a short glance at traditional “beauty products” to see the toxic potpourri that people are slathering on one of their largest organs.  Those chemicals are then being absorbed into the body causing all kinds of acute and chronic problems.

My skin stayed super sensitive but at least I wasn’t poisoning my body.  Then I overhauled my diet.  As I read about whole food and raw diets, skin would come up a lot.  I didn’t even hope, I just made food choices that felt good and figured it wouldn’t hurt.  I do think it helped a bit but I would find my cheeks burning, even with the natural products I would use.   I had a waste land of ‘the next best thing’ under the sink.

I found Sea Chi Organics in the mid-2000s and was so happy.  I love the company, I love the energy of the owner and the products are wonderful with pristine ingredients.  I started using Sea Chi Cream and it was definitely the best my face had looked in years.  It just felt good!  I also love her body wash, it’s one of the few things that doesn’t leave my skin itching after a shower!

I continued to use Sea Chi for years and we still make sure to always have some in the house. It’s David’s lotion of choice when his skin is dry and I love it as a hand and body lotion.   But 2 years ago I found what, for me, was the answer for my face.

Guess what it’s called – “Best Skin Ever” and I’m telling you, it delivers!!!!  Nadine Artemis is the gifted creator of this oil.  I think she is AMAZING, magical even!!  Her company is called Living Libations and I can just hang out and read and watch her videos all day!

She explained how all we need is oil, oil to clean, oil to moisturize.  It was so simple and honestly seemed way too good to be true.  But the ingredients were so great, I had to try it!  Every ingredient was intentional, organic, wildcrafted, pure, amazing!  Nothing extra, nothing artificial, everything to nourish the skin and body. Because, again, everything you put on your skin is being absorbed into your body.

When it arrived I put it on and waited to see what my cheeks had to say. No burning, that was a good sign.  That night I washed with the oil and put a few drops on my face and neck. (Never forget your neck, whatever you do to your face, do to your neck. If not, it will age before its time!)  The next morning I woke up and my skin was amazing!  Not dry, not red but nourished, smooth, beautiful.  My rash looked less angry.  I was cautiously optimistic.

After a week, I knew I would never use anything else again.  I could not believe the difference, the EASE, the feel of it.  AMAZING!

I love having one product and that’s it.  I love how it feels on my skin.  I love that the ingredients are the most pristine and nourishing.  I love that it’s created by such an amazing woman.

I’m all about ease and simplicity and it doesn’t get easier than one product that does it all.   I like the “Lavish Abundance” version.  At first the smell was strange to me and now I crave it!

I’m so grateful to have found something, after all of these years,  that I can feel good about putting on my face and something my face loves as well!

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Healing Plants in Your Backyard

As much as I enjoy eating from the yard, it’s even more exciting to find things that heal, no drug store required!


One of my favorites has to be Plantain.  Anyone can find Plantain.  It grows in often inhospitable environments, next to buildings, sidewalks and driveways in dry, compact soil.  It’s one of the plants that first comes to help bring health back to damaged soil.

I had to transplant some into my yard because I wanted to make sure to have it on hand.   There  is a broad leaf variety (pictured here) and a thin leaf variety.  When you break either leaf you will find a stretchy string.  That’s one of the identifying factors.   You may remember the thin leaf variety from childhood.  It has a thin stem with a compact seed.  If you wrapped the stem around just so, you could “shoot” the seed part🙂

Plantain is unbeatable for taking the sting out of insect bites.  So, it’s great that you can find them just about anywhere.  You crush (or chew) up the leaf and apply it as a poultice.  It’s amazing how quickly the sting will die down.  It is also an amazing wound healer, helps with pain, stops bleeding and has a drawing out effect.  I included it in a salve I made that has been amazing (recipe below).


My new favorite is Cleavers!  I have cleavers everywhere and honestly, it’s a weed that has not been my friend.  But when I was walking in the yard and saw how prolific it was, I decided it was here to teach me something.  When I began researching I found all kinds of amazing properties!!

It has marked effect on the lymphatic system.  We I first read that, I knew why it was in my yard.  I have a LONG history with mono and lymphatic issues.  Mother Nature knew and put this healer in my path, literally!!

I learned that Native Americans used it as a “spring tonic” to get rid of the stagnation of winter.  It has detoxifying effects, it helps with skin conditions, urinary tract health, even kidney stones.  The list went on and on.  So, I decided to give it a try.

Cold Cleavers Tea

I choose to use the ‘cold tea’ method.  Each night, for two weeks,  I would cut fresh cleavers, chop them, put in a quart jar, fill with cold water and let sit until morning.  In the morning, I would strain and drink.  It tastes like SPRING!!  So, light and fresh.  I felt different almost immediately.  The whole two weeks I had tons of energy, felt lighter, less draggy, etc.   It was also the week that I historical have trouble with migraines and I didn’t even have a twinge!  That was amazing because it was also a week with some additional stressors which usually doesn’t bode well for my head!

I finished that trial about 5 days ago and I really miss it.  I think I’ll start back and at least do it a few times a week, while it’s still fresh and prolific in the yard.   I’m thrilled to have finally made friends with this plant!

Another plant friend in my yard is Comfrey.  I got my Comfrey plant from a friend and

Newly emerging Comfrey

have divided it and given away several bits to friends.  It’s a hardy grower and it has so much to offer.  It is known also “knitbone”.  The homeopathic remedy “Symphytum” is made from Comfrey.   Symphytum is an excellent remedy to speed bone healing after a break.   The plant leaves can be wrapped around a strain, sprain, bruise or torn ligaments and it will provide relief and help with healing.   You can make a poultice and then dress or we just wrap the whole leaf around the area and bandage over top of that.

It is added to the salve (recipe below) and my mother swears it’s the only thing that touches her arthritis pains.

Comfrey in bloom

Another gift from Comfrey is it’s ability to be a natural, organic fertilizer.  Comfrey has a DEEP root system.  It draws nutrients, including potassium, from deep within the soil and stores them in its leaves.  You can harvest the leaves several times during a growing season and apply them, chopped or whole, around your plants.  I work chopped leaves into soil just a bit and recover with mulch. (More about Deep Mulch Gardening Later.)

In my last post I talked about eating Chickweed.  It is delicious and loaded with nutrients.  It, too, has healing qualities, especially for the skin.  So, I included it in the salve.   This was the first salve that I made. I wanted it to be healing and include things from my yard.  I tweaked some different recipes that I found and this is what I came up with:

1 part Plantain
1 part Chickweed
1 part Comfrey
Olive Oil
Beeswax (organic)*

I used fresh herbs, so I cleaned them and let them air dry and start to wilt.  That helps remove some of the water content.  The water content can cause the salve to go bad faster but I really wanted to use fresh herbs from the yard.  It turned out to last a long time without spoiling.

  • Add chopped herbs to a small crockpot or double boiler.
  • Cover herbs with olive and then about an inch above.
  • Heat herbs and oil on low for several hours (around 3 hours)
  • Let this mixture cool
  • Strain through cheese cloth
  • Add beeswax to the strained oil, melt
    (A cup of oil will require 1/2 – 3/4 ounce of beeswax, start small and work up)
  • To test the hardness, put on metal spoon and let it cool.  If it’s too soft, add more beeswax
  • Pour into jars and allow to cool

*Many beekeepers use toxic chemicals and those chemicals stay in the wax, so always use organic wax.  If you can find some from a local trusted beekeeper, great!

I found this salve great for small cuts, bruises, bug bites and as I mentioned, my mom swears by it for the arthritis in her hands.

There is something really satisfying about making your own salve from herbs you’ve collected in the yard!

As with edibles, start small.  Identify a few weeds and start researching. I think you’ll find, as I did, that exactly what you need is waiting for you to discover it!

I’d love to hear about your favorites, please comment below.  Happy Hunting!

Posted in Yard and Garden | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Eating Weeds – My Favorite Time of Year!

Spring is in full swing in Charlotte.  Everything is blooming and the trees are leafing but the most exciting part is that the wild edibles are everywhere!   The idea of eating weeds is a fairly new concept to me.  I’ve been enjoying the bounty from my yard for a couple of years now.  If it’s a new idea, start small.  That’s what I did and really continue to do.  I admire and hope to learn from the experienced herbalists whose knowledge is vast and magical.  But you can start with just a few simple beauties and reap the benefits.  So, I’ll focus on those.

Wild Violets

I’ve always seen Wild Violets as an early indicator of spring.  I have long admired this beautiful gift after winter but didn’t know, until recently, how much they had to offer.   Both the leaves and flowers are high in Vitamin C and A.  A 1/4 cup of leaves has about the same amount of Vitamin C as FOUR oranges! *    I love to garnish salads with the flowers and here is a great dressing recipe to use with the leaves. But consider using them in other recipes that call for mild greens and dressing up desserts and other dishes with the beautiful flowers.

Creamy Wild Violet Dressing

  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar (or fresh lemon)
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 2 cups fresh Violet greens  (I’ve also use chickweed or a combo)
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 garlic clove
  • dash of pepper
  • ½ cup yogurt  (homemade or organic/plain)
  1. Set aside yogurt, blend other ingredients in a food processor (or blender)
  2. Add yogurt, and blend gently until smooth.


Chickweed is another favorite and pretty much everyone has chickweed!  I have it throughout my yard but the healthiest patch is in a shady part of the woods.   Chickweed contains magnesium, calcium, iron, copper, zinc, chlorophyll, protein, and vitamin A.   It has a mild taste and is great just added to a fresh salad.  If you have chickens, remember they love it too.  It helps make tasty eggs!

It’s pretty easy to identify. There are several key points.  There are sets of two leaves opposite each other on the stem, there is a line of fine hair on one side of the stem and at the leaf sets sometimes it will switch sides.  The flower is small and white.  It looks like it has 10 petals but really it’s just 5 with very deep slits.   Chickweed doesn’t like the heat so patches in the sun will fade first but it will last a long time in the shade and will sometimes survive the winter.  It’s definitely going strong and ready to eat while you are waiting for spring greens to get up and going.   This year my greens made it through the winter but that doesn’t always happen.


Of course, I can’t forget the amazing Dandelion.  The bane of grass lovers everywhere, the dandelion is a powerhouse of nutrition.  Dandelion is considered a “bitter”.  We tend towards sweeter greens in the US but bitters can serve an important part in our digestive process.  They help stimulate stomach acid which in turn, helps us digest more efficiently and to access maximum nutrients from our food.  Contrary to popular opinion, “too much stomach acid” is not causing “heartburn”, it’s actually too little!  So, the condition is complicated by the over prescribing and self medicating with antacids.  Read more about this here, on Heal Thyself.

It’s easiest just to add a few leaves to your salad.   You can also make teas with the leaves and fritters with the flowers.  Make sure, if you do decide to harvest, that they are in an area free from pesticides and herbicides.

Suburban dwellers have become grass farmers and in order to maximize their “crop” they spend hours upon hours spraying, cutting and fertilizing.  All of this work for something that can’t be eaten and makes a poor habitat for the bugs and wildlife we need to have a thriving ecosystem.  It’s just one big monocrop that stretches across the US.  I’ve seen estimates stating that upwards of $40 BILLION is spent on lawn care!  Many people are using more pesticides and herbicides per acre of lawn than is used per acre of agriculture.

Maybe it’s time to rethink some of that and see the beauty in the native plants (aka weeds) that grow without our money and labor.  Not only is it easier but it’s free food and free medicine too!  (More on healing plants in the next post.)

Start small, with things you recognize easily.   Soon, you will find that plants draw your eye and you see potential food everywhere!

Posted in Yard and Garden | 2 Comments

Bokashi Composting

My Bokashi Bin

It was not hard to decide what my first entry would be about.  You see, I’m a bit evangelical about composting in general but especially Bokashi composting!   I recently wrote an article called, “Putting Your Waste to Work”, about Bokashi and deep mulch gardening for Natural Life Magazine.   And I was lucky enough to give a talk on the topic to a packed house at our local library last week.  So, it just made sense to make it my first official post here!

Bokashi composting is just EASY!  I believe it is the easiest way to eliminate ALL household food waste.

A standard American family of 4 sends 2000 pounds of food waste to the landfill each year.  I live in a neighborhood with about 160 homes.  That’s 320,000 pounds of waste from my small neighborhood alone!!!!   Bokashi allows us to make a huge dent in that number AND create amazing compost to enhance our soil and nourish our plants.

Bokashi is a Japanese word meaning “fermented organic matter”.   It is a process that has been used for 100s of years inJapan.  In the 70s, Professor Higa perfected the microbial blend to help the process work correctly each time.  This allowed Bokashi to become more popular and spread across the globe.

The process basically “pickles” the waste, instead of “rotting” as we see with traditional compost.  The fermenting/pickling eliminates the odor associated with rotting.

The microbials work in an anaerobic environment to ferment the waste, once it is fermented it’s transferred to the soil (or compost pile) where the soil microbials take over and finish the job breaking down the food.

This process is happening without emitting gases.  Methane gases being released from decomposing food waste at our landfills is a big concern in terms of “green house gases”.

My compost and a worm friend🙂

With Bokashi composting we eliminated ALL of the food waste from our home, our trash doesn’t smell and at the end of the week it’s half full and light as feather!  And that waste is now producing amazing compost that I can use around my yard for my veggies and flowers.

What you need:
A collection bin, that can drain. (Two bins are preferable)  There are commercial bins available from Rainbow Worms or you can make your own with nesting buckets and adding a drain valve in the lower bucket.  I chose a “fancy” bin like at the link above because it’s sitting out in our eating area but there are many ways to make it work!

Bokashi – wheat bran that is inculcated with microbials and left to ferment.   You can buy this already made or make your own. (Recipe below)

The Process:
Add scraps (dairy, bones, meat, ANYTHING) to bin and sprinkle with bokashi, cover with plate and seal lid.  Remember this is an *anaerobic* process.  You may choose to collect scraps on the counter in a ceramic bin and move to the bokashi bin once or twice a day or add as you go.

Once your bin is filled, it must sit for 14 days to complete the ferment of the latest materials added.  You can either have two bins or move the contents of the filled bin to a 5 gallon bucket to continue fermenting.

After the ferment is completed, it can then be added to your compost pile or directly to soil in your garden or yard.

You can plant on top of the bokashi after 2 weeks.  It will transform into compost to use elsewhere after 4-8 weeks.  This process is even faster, in as short as 2 weeks, when you add the fermented scraps to your compost pile.   It’s a great way to amend your passive pile and speed up compost production.

Dried Bokashi


Making your own Bokashi:  

A 6-8 month supply can be made for about $13.

You will need:

25 pounds of Wheat Bran or Rice Bran (check local feed stores)
1.5 tablespoons Ceramic powder (I get mine from Teraganix)
2.5 tablespoons Sea Salt
1/4 cup EM-1 (Teraganix sells Prof. Higa’s formula, it’s what I have always used)
1/4 cup Molasses
2 gallons HOT water

Mix the ingredients in large bin.  After thoroughly mixed, it should start sticking together, move to garbage bag and suck out the air with vacuum cleaner.  Let it ferment in this air tight bag for 2-3 weeks.  You will know it’s done by the sweet pickling type smell.  There may be white spots; that is fine. Black or green mold, is not ok to see.  If you see that, air is getting in.  You can scoop out those parts and reseal.

You may use it right away but if you dry it then it will last for years.  To dry, spread on garbage bags or tarp (layering over newspaper helps it dry faster).  Once dry you can store in bags or bins.   It’s a fun process and really easy.  Children especially enjoy helping!  You can make small batches in buckets or huge batches on tarps.  It is safe, actually good for birds and the environment.  So, don’t worry if it spills outside.

Pros –

  • having no food waste
  • the trash not smelling and being light and not needing to go to the curb each week
  • the convenience
  • no smelly food to be carried out in the yard
  • soil enhancement, generating a lot of compost


  • You need a place to bury it
  • You need to make or buy your bokashi (though it’s easy to make)
  • “Fancy” bins are expensive but buckets work fine (account for liquid)
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