30 July 2012

summer to-do

I stumbled across this brilliant list of "100 Things To Do With Your Summer Vacation" at Foodie Underground. It is so spot-on. I'm stealing my favorites from them and making it into my late summer resolution list.

#1. Make your own potato chips. 
I plan on using Alana Chernila's recipe from her book The Homemade Pantry: 101 Foods You Can Stop Buying & Start Making. I tried making beet chips last night, but they turned out more like soggy beet discs. Not great.

#3-6. Pick your own berries. Overdose on berries while out picking them. Come home and realize you actually didn’t have room for 20 pounds of berries in a freezer. Make up three new recipes for said berry and then go out and buy a chest freezer to house the rest. 
Well, pretty much covered this one during strawberry season, but I intend to repeat it throughout the summer. Need to get to a blueberry patch, stat.

#7. Learn to sing a drinking song in a another language. Host a party and require all guests to learn it. 
Obviously. We sometimes make up the words to a German song that the old fellas in liederhosen sing at the Biergarten, but it would be nice to actually learn it. 

Yes, of course.

#12. Go vegan for a week.
Wouldn't actually be that hard at all. I sometimes unwittingly go vegan for entire days which, when I realize it, I usually remedy with a quesadilla. 

#13. Take your lunch to work in a mason jar.
I already take my smoothies, juices and soups in a mason jar, but I've been meaning to try these salads-in-a-jar too.

#17. Go a week without taking a photo of a single meal.
Not possible. (Great article in that link, though.)

#21. Infuse. Anything.
Beyond the obvious and delicious booze, I'm planning infused vinegars and other such delicacies for the season.

#24. Bake something and send it to a far away friend. Priority Mail of course, you don’t want things to go stale.
I used to do this more and then we both worried that all of the baking was making us chubby, but really... who cares? It's nice to get cookies in the mail.

#25. Master a summer cocktail and bring it to every dinner party you go to.
We are working on this currently. It will involve fresh herbs. And probably gin. Chris surprised me with an anniversary drink that involved muddled thyme, blueberries and lemon with a splash of vodka and tonic. It was good. Really good.

#29. Follow up every food remark you make with, “trust me, I’m a food blogger” just to see what happens.
This slays me.

#31. Beer margarita? Yes, please.
Yup, in the Vitamix.

#34. Join a co-op.
About freaking time, right?

#36 & #37. Start your own kombucha. Invite your friends over and gross them out with said kombucha.
Already in progress, but I need to find a new SCOBY and get brewing again. Sadly, I had to say goodbye to my old SCOBY a few months ago... it got... funky looking. More funky than usual.

#38. Attend an underground supper club.
Host an underground supper club? Re-read The Art of Eating In again and get inspired.

#39. See how many different liquids you can make ice cubes out of.
Game on.

#40. Learn how to can.
Or, just do it more.

#41. Learn how to pickle.
Or, learn how to like pickles more. I just made a few jars of garlicky dill pickles and a jar of bread and butter pickles, so we shall see.

#43. Keep a food journal, and instead of taking pictures of your food, write about it.
Good practice.

#45. Find something to muddle other than mint.
See #25 above; there will be so many muddled herbs in our summer cocktails.

#50. Make your own yogurt.
Fortunately for me, I just scored a $3 old-school yogurt maker from the Habitat ReStore. I gave it a try last week and it works like a charm. More on this later.

#52. Find a Le Creuset at an estate sale.
Pretty pretty please.

#53. Keep simple syrup on hand in your kitchen at all times.
Necessary. All sorts of syrups. Possibly for our summer cocktail.

#62. Plan a road trip based around regional specialties.
Upon reflection, I believe most of our road trips and vacations in general are planned around food and regional specialties.

#63. Make your own ice cream.
Yes. Sister, I will be borrowing your ice cream maker.

#66. Learn some key food phrases in French.
I'm not so good with French, but I'm great at speaking nonsense in a Pepe Le Pew accent.

#68. Brew your own cold brew coffee.
Just brewed my first batch a few weekends ago and I'm hooked. It's so smooth & delicious!

#69. Go foraging.
Can someone guide me on a foraging tour so I don't accidentally poison myself like poor Christopher McCandless.

#75. Learn how to make fresh cheese.
I've made ricotta and mozzarella; now onto the hard cheeses? Maybe?

#76. Film the intro to your new food television series.
I could be a YouTube sensation.

#79. Read The Omnivore’s Dilemma and if you’ve already done that, read Food Politics.
Better yet, let's keep on rocking the From Scratch Club book club. Our next book will be announced shortly!

#81. Mix up a few jam drinks.
This could be significant for #25. I'm getting out the gin and strawberry jam now...

#82. Draw your most recent meal.
I will make Chris do this for me.

#84. Paint one of your kitchen walls with chalkboard paint so you can write on it and feel like you’re in a restaurant.
Maybe not an entire wall, but I'd love to get some chalkboard paint up in here.

#85. Buy cheap wine and make your own labels for it. Your friends will never know the difference.
Hilarious. I am doing this all the time.

#86. Perfect your own sangria recipe.
Done. I'm changing this goal to: Drink sangria often.

#90. Stop buying Nutella and make it yourself.
This is long overdue.

#91. Host a party where all ingredients come from within a 100 miles radius.
Been meaning to do this for ages. 

#92. Plant an edible flower garden.

What do you have left on your summer to-do list? Any good ones I should add to mine? Let me know!


  1. I'm thinking summer cocktails could include some of that cold brew....Eh?

  2. I started listing each item I loved...then I realized I was listing EVERY item. Please update the list to include going to a 2 day 90s-centric music festival with your sister. And yes, you can borrow my ice cream maker if I can eat the ice cream.

  3. We just joined our 2d Co-op. The Old Creamery in Cummington MA. We are founding members. Woot!

  4. LOVING THIS LIST!!! Sooo, can we go blueberry picking together? Winney's up here in North Country is AMAZING (ask Becky). Over 18 varieties, its so cool to check out the different bushes, how each grows and the taste. Pretty please?!?!

  5. warning: if you perfect #90- i will be your bff :)

  6. I love your list! So many of these are on my list and I've also stolen several of yours to add as well - what FUN!


Hi & thanks for joining in! I try to respond to comments directly at the post page, so check back frequently.