Friday, September 29th, 2017 at 7:30 pm
Canyon Theater, Boulder Public Library, 1001 Arapahoe Ave, Boulder
Directed, Filmed, and Edited By: Mattia Sacco Botto
2017, USA, English/Chinese, 82 minutes
A Journey through the People’s Republic of Fermentation is a series of eight short films that follow renowned fermented food author Sandor Katz and Mara King, co-founder of Ozuke, as they learn about fermented food traditions in Southwestern China. Fermentation revivalist Sandor Katz has written two books and traveled all over the world studying and sharing knowledge of a multitude of fermentation traditions but until recently had never been to China. Mara will introduce the series and comment on the films, providing a fuller flavor of the incredible culinary journey that she, Sandor, her Mom, and filmmaker Mattia Sacco Botto shared.
Midway through the series, there will be an intermission with a sampling of the following dishes from the films made by Ozuke and Fresh Thymes Eatery: Mrs. Dings PÀO CÀI or pickled vegetables, Mapo Tofu (vegetarian but not gluten-free), and fermented rice pudding with apples. After the films are complete, there will be a chance to celebrate fermented food with a drink and discuss the films with Mara at License No. 1, which is located in the Hotel Boulderado.
Even though historical evidence points to China as the birthplace of all things fermented (such as soy sauce and rice wine) there is very little literature about China’s diverse fermented food traditions that has been translated into the English language. China has been difficult for Sandor to access, both in terms of language, cultural traditions, and geography. This changed when he met Mara and Mattia.
Mara King, a chef and fermentation professional at Ozuke, was born and raised in Hong Kong. Film maker Mattia Sacco Botto is an Italian native with ties to the Slow Food movement, strong Mandarin language skills, and experience producing food TV shows for CCTV. Armed with Mara’s home grown knowledge of Chinese food traditions and a working knowledge of the Chinese language, the trio joined forces and set off together on an adventure to eat lots of amazing things, cook with locals, and learn as much as they could about the fermentation traditions of Southwestern China. A Journey Through the People’s Republic of Fermentation documents their journey.