Garden Day Flower Crown Ambassador Zayaan Khan (@byzayaankhan) is a food activist, horticulturist, seed librarian and community driven leader. She also has a master’s degree around thinking about our seed culture beyond farmers and gardeners.
Zayaan Khan - Garden Day Flower Crown Ambassador
Regarded by many as a daughter of the soil, Zayaan regularly hosts food and fermentation workshops. Here she has kindly shared one of her favourite fermented food recipes with us to prepare for guests during this year’s Garden Day celebration on Sunday 20 October.
According to Zayaan Wild Garden Soda is ideal to serve when entertaining. “It appeases even the most discerning palates … especially those belonging to children,” she says with a smile.
*Please note | This recipe needs to be prepped a week in advance in order for the fermentation to work.
How to make Wild Garden Soda
You will need:
A 1 litre jar with lid
- Favourite sweet summer fruits, perhaps peach and strawberry, or kei apples and raspberries.
- Herbs and edible flowers from the garden.
- Raw honey OR maple syrup OR agave syrup if you vegan. Honey works best as it is full of wild yeast and flavours, and its 100% local.
- Spring water or tap water left overnight.
- Take your favourite summer fruit and cut into chunky pieces to fill about a third of the volume of a 1litre jar.
- Add a healthy dollop of honey or maple or agave syrup, about 2 Tablespoons.
- Add your favourite garden edible flowers and herbs to create a flavour sensation!
- Top up with spring water (if you must use tap water, let it sit overnight so the chlorine can evaporate).
- Then close lid tightly and shake shake shake shake until all the honey and sweetness is dissolved, don't be afraid if you think you're damaging the fruit, it will release more flavours and make the drink sweeter.
- Now open the jar again, either leaving a cloth secured with an elastic band or leave the lid on but not screwed tight.
- You are now actively fermenting, the loose lid (or cloth) protects the soda from any dust or insects but it needs to be exposed to oxygen (leaving the lid loose but on is enough oxygen) to ferment.
- Leave the jar out of direct sun for a week, it will bubble and smell lovely.
- After 5 days check the taste of the liquid, if it tastes good to you, strain and bottle or put into a jar with a lid that closes tight.
- Leave this tightly closed soda overnight on the counter and then refrigerate for a day. This will build carbonation so you can get a fizzy soda! If it doesn't fizz enough to your liking, close it tightly again and let it sit another day on the counter then refrigerate again.
It seems a lot of work but it's easy! Have fun, play with different fruit and herbs and volumes!