Meet your Instructors

Jori Jayne Emde

Claudia Lucero

Claudia Lucero is the founder and cheesemaker at Urban Cheesecraft. Claudia was raised with fresh Mexican cheeses. Nothing made her happier than visiting the cheese counters in Tijuana, Mexico for a soft queso fresco and then the tortilleria for a steamy corn tortilla. These grocery outings and simple streetside tacos shared with her nana were comfort food bliss! As she followed this appreciation of good food into adulthood, she came upon cheesemaking and dove in deep. Amazed by her new powers she set out to teach others. Since 2009, Claudia and Urban Cheesecraft have been on a mission to enable anyone to make simple, fresh cheeses with confidence and ease right in their own kitchen. Urban Cheesecraft began as an Etsy shop with a trio of DIY cheese kits. It has grown into including dairy-free cheese kits and wholesale partnerships with Williams Sonoma, 1800-Flowers, Whole Foods Market, Uncommon Goods and more. In addition, Claudia leads team-building experiences and classes online as well as in person, and she has written several books; One Hour Cheese, One Hour Dairy-Free Cheese, Instant Pot Cheese and the upcoming, Cooking with Whey. Claudia can be reached via www.urbancheesecraft.com.

Claudia Lucero

Creator

Kirsten K. Shockey

Hi, I'm Kirsten and I ferment things. I began fermenting on our 40-acres small holding of wooded hillside on unceded Takelma territory over 2 decades ago. I didn't have the language to say that was what I was doing, I just taught myself to preserve everything that we grew. I didn't have a clue or the internet but I had plenty of passion and idealism to figure out how it was done "old school" and maybe, most importantly, I had nobody that told me I couldn't do this. My passion for food systems has been with me for over 3 decades and at some point, the two collided and as my responsibilities to raising children waned. I found myself sharing the passion and joy of working with microbes to create delicious healthy food first locally then globally. In this desire to see everyone have access to fermentation I've co-written (with my husband Christopher) the books Fermented Vegetables, Fiery Ferments, Miso, Tempeh, Natto and Other Tasty Ferments, The Big Book of Cidermaking and Homebrewed Vinegar. I have a lot of great fails. I think working with tempeh has given me the most humility as I've learned to push it past soy beans. The most expensive fail was the 30 gallons of sauerkraut that was fine in all ways except the texture--which was spreadable like butter. There is no market for spreadable kraut--yet. I am delighted to be able to share what I know with you here. Feel free to reach out through this platform or at kirsten@ferment.works.

Kirsten K. Shockey

Fermentation Educator & Author

Meredith Leigh

Hi! I'm Meredith. I've been working in food and farming for over 20 years, working to de-fragment and co-recreate the food system. When I started fermenting, it brought everything that I love and believe about working with plants, animals and the soil full circle to working with food in the kitchen. My favorite thing about fermentation is that it allows anyone anywhere in the world to harness the patterns of nature that drive life, giving people a super accessible window into the elemental vitality of the earth that both inspires us to live consciously and to hope for the future. I love teaching about fermentation because I get to carry that message, and empower people to take back their food and their health. My specialty is fermented meat products, but I also enjoy making veggie ferments, miso, and non-alcoholic fermented beverages. I'd say my biggest fermentation fail was the time I tried to ferment an entire sheep's stomach. Actually, the jury is still out on that one. I think it is still in my cellar somewhere... Anyway, I can't wait to share fermentation projects with you, and learn from you in turn! You can reach me at mereleighfood@gmail.com

Meredith Leigh