Welcome to Crock of Time, my little corner of the internet, a place for me to try to give back to a world that is in some chaos at the moment. This website is launching on May 19, 2020 (my birthday!), during the global COVID-19 pandemic (or after it, or maybe before it really got bad, depending on who you are and/or when you’re reading this).
I made the decision to start working on this site at the beginning of the year before I’d ever heard of the word “coronavirus” (I bought the domain on January 31), and I’d like to say that the ensuing stay-at-home orders, responsible social distancing, and working from home gave me ample time to get this done… well, let’s just say that web developers get busy during times of unprecedented internet usage. If you’ll excuse the jargon, I’ve attempted to launch a “minimum viable product” which I would have liked to have been done with much earlier than now, but here we are.
Staying at home did, however, give me the flexibility to start several different fermentation projects that can be difficult to care for every day or easy to forget about if commuting to the office. And the pantry essentials shortages made me hyper-aware of using every scrap of fresh food we had on hand with as little waste as possible. So far, things like fresh produce and meat have not been an issue to get a hold of at the store, but there have been warnings about supply chain disruptions that are hard to ignore.
Years ago, I began experimenting with fermentation first as a way to preserve vegetables from my backyard garden, and also because things like beer and miso are tasty and I wanted to know how I could make those things myself. And so, we encapsulate the 3 dimensions of my relationship with fermentation: preservation, taste transformation, and an incessant drive to tinker, learn, and experiment.
As I mentioned, I am a web developer by trade. I make websites for others for a living, but haven’t touched my own in at least 5 years. I’ve considered blogging about web dev stuff but it’s never been a priority when I’m focused on getting work done on a timetable. But when it comes to my hobby fermentation projects, I obsessively log notes, measurements, and observations about them in a little notebook (which became the design inspiration for this website, or at least the first iteration of it). My hope is that, if I move these notes online, they’ll be useful to more people than just me. I suppose we’ll find out, won’t we.
I’m certainly not a trained professional when it comes to food handling and preparation, but I believe that everyone should be empowered to make and preserve their own food. Join me on this journey, and together we will become masters of our own kitchens!
P.S: Twitter suspended the @crockoftime account some time between when I set it up and launching the site, but I’m leaving it in the sidebar in the uncharacteristically optimistic hope that I can get that sorted out soon. So if you want to see what I’ve been up to leading up to this site, I’m @cr0ybot on Twitter and Instagram.