Besides packing ourselves and the kids (for lounging, for hiking, for swimming, for hosting a croquet tournament, for going out of a special dinner, for attending a conference, for riding around at the ranch, and for presenting ethnobotanical improv at a semi-formal garden party*) and trying to clean the house, we spread mulch, because, unlike my parents, we don't have a sprinkle system to repair, and we made sauerkraut, kimchee and salsa.
We had extra vegetables in the fridge. The In-Laws had given us some of them, so we couldn't just take them back, and, besides, I had been wanting to ferment foods for over a year. Kimchee would be obvious answer, no?
I followed the recipe from Sandor Ellix Katz's Wild Fermentation. Unlike Katz's more comprehensive The Art of Fermentation, Wild Fermentation includes step-by-step recipes. Except for the temperature of fermentation (I was leaving town so I stuck the whole think in the fridge), I followed the Baechu Kimchi (page 47) exactly, having a cabbage, chiles, ginger, daikon and carrots all waiting in the fridge. The Mister thinks that it is overly salty and it does make one's mouth burn, but I am really happy with the results. The sauerkraut is okay.
What do you do the day you leave on vacation?
*Ethnobotanical Improv Storytelling, for real. I panicked, so I rehearsed the part I already know I am good at (the botany) tried to forget about the part which is difficult (improvisational storytelling). I was initially relieved when I didn't have a crowd for real storytelling, then suddenly found my groove, started telling great plant-use stories, and was dismayed when I had to quit. Contact me if you know of an audience for such an obscure entertainment.