ZAK: Blair Nosanwisch is a rabbinical student and a pickler and her advice is grab some salt, grab a vegetable and learn again how your hands can create the very things you want to nourish you.
BLAIR: Like basically, nowadays we have processed food and I'm in favor of us becoming the processors again in our own kitchens. I think that in that way, not only do we learn skills that we would otherwise lose but we also allow just the fact that the work of our hands can be something that nourishes us to come back into our lives. And the other think I was thinking about was that we're all going through this sort of radical level of change. Change that happened so quickly, that happened to us, that leaves us feeling disempowered and out of control. And I think that learning how to ferment and realizing how simple it is is a tiny way...a tiny and healthy way to take back some control in our daily life.
ZAK: Yeah that seems to be so much of the work right now is to reckon with this profound unknown...not knowing and just figuring out what are the little ways in which we can exert some control so that we don't feel wholly helpless.
BLAIR: Yeah, in the first few days after this pandemic took its first turn where like, I and think everyone else started to realize, like, holy crap this happening...I had this night where I was like, oh my God, I know what to do...I need to make sauerkraut. That's obviously the thing I should be doing right now. And part of that realization for me is that it's familiar and comfortable and I know how to do it and also that it's a really positive place to put that nervous energy. To say, you know what, I'm gonna remind my hands that they know how to make food that can keep for a long time.