I love speaking with groups large and small, and am willing to travel to speak. I’m always happy to consider discounts for online classes or other incentives (like recipe booklets) to share with attendees.
To book a talk, please reach out using this form.
Here are some of my specialties:
Fermentation demonstrations and workshops
Hands on demonstrations, leading workshops, or just guiding you through an in-depth discovery of process. I work with seasoned and brand-new cooks to make fermentation accessible and fun.
I am also available for talks, without a demonstration or workshop component, on fermentation and its history.
Food History and food stories
The history of fermentation
Curious about the history of brewing? What about sauerkraut and kimchi? My presentations are fun and interactive (and sometimes include things to taste!) Based on my book Our Fermented Lives: A History of How Fermented Foods Have Shaped Cultures and Communities, I can cover a range of time periods, interests, and geographic areas, and especially appreciate the opportunity to be in conversation with fermentation experts from cultures outside my own.
Fermentation and community-building; fermentation and ecology
We have a lot to learn from communities of beneficial microbes, which can help strengthen our own communities and our relationship with nature. I love talking about how fermented foods, and the practice of fermentation, can help us connect with and learn from others and connect to the natural world.
Mindfulness in the kitchen
Based on my class, Mindful Eating, Mindful Making, I can lead a conversation or hands-on workshop about mindful cooking and the benefits of cultivating a mindfulness practice, including tips for creating a sustainable mindful cooking practice at home. While my focus is usually on fermentation and mindfulness, the skills I teach can be applied to mindfulness with any cooking practice.
In my online class, Preserving Abundance, I teach students how to use food scraps for everything from homemade stock to home crafts, with an emphasis on helping students rethink how they approach food. I offer talks and demonstrations to help people learn and apply this low-waste mindset, and can offer recipes and class discounts to accompany the event.
Storytelling through food
In Rooted in Place, I help students think through the ways we can tell the story of a place, or capture a memory of it, using wild and locally-grown foods as well as wild fermentation. In my storytelling through food talks, I bring this approach to real time, and love to brainstorm with people during the Q+A about how they might tell the story of a place close to their hearts.
I also offer talks on creating food from your favorite stories: for example, an herbal mead based on the Atlantis myths. I have a series of questions I ask myself before I turn a story, a poem, or any other piece of writing into a dish, and I love sharing these with examples.
Learning about wild plants and incorporating them into my diet has been a source of great joy for me, and I love to help others do the same.
My emphasis is on sustainable foraging that puts us in relationship with the land, rather than seeing foraging as a one-way relationship in which we extract resources.
The Hidden Cosmos
I love to do talks and events around The Hidden Cosmos: A Fermentation Oracle + Recipe Deck, including readings, talks, and demonstrations either on fermentation, fermentation as a teacher or as part of a spiritual practice, or on the art itself.
Making food art
I love to illustrate my own food writing, including through The Hidden Cosmos or my newsletter, and can talk through my process, the steps I take to choose medium and message, or a hands on arts and crafts night.
Cookbook, Family Recipe, and Culinary Collection Care
Before founding Root, I worked as a rare books curator, with a PhD in Library Science and with previous work and research in book history and in special collections (rare books and archives). I combine this expertise with my current work to help you protect and care for your own cookbooks and family recipes, or to think about how to build and grow (and maintain) a collection of cookbooks that speaks to your interests and effectively covers whatever culinary topic you’re interested in.
The history of cookbooks, particularly changes in recipe formats in English-language cookbooks over time, and their influences on how we cook.
I can also speak on other areas of book history and culinary history!
To book a talk, please contact me here
Experiences and exhibits
If you’d like a dynamic, creative event, I will work with you to provide the experience you’re looking for, whether a meal, a demonstration, or even an arts and crafts program.
These can include hands-on learning activities, demonstrations, creative projects (like making and using historic inks), or whatever else our imaginations can dream up!
I have over a decade experience creating and leading library and museum programming and community events.
I have a background that spans everything from curating a rare book collection to driving city buses, and it’s very rewarding to use that to come up with some creative, fun experiences to share with others.
A few examples (though far from an exhaustive list): making natural inks, using food waste in visual art, vision journaling and food, building and maintaining a cookbook collection, creative food writing, etc. I can also lead events like Ferment + Chill, a calm space to create in community.
My current programming ideas for cultural heritage spaces focus on food and food-adjacent work, but I am always happy to discuss programs in my other areas of professional expertise as well (book history, for example).
I am very eager to return to creating exhibits, too!
I have conceptualized, written copy and selected artifacts for multiple museum exhibits, and would love to work in collaboration on exhibits around any of my interest areas.
I maintain a professional presence in cultural heritage fields through service, teaching, and research.
I enjoy speaking on my areas of specialization (theory, rare books and archives, history of the book, services to underserved communities), and can offer either research-focused or practice-focused discussions (or both) that offer a depth of knowledge and implementable ideas.
I also speak on nontraditional career paths for academics, with an emphasis on graduate students and professional organizations. In these talks, I discuss my own path and use it to highlight different ideas for branching out and exploring possibilities, with an emphasis on offering skills and ideas and facilitating discussion with attendees about their own careers.
You can contact me about any event or exhibits ideas at this link