On warm, sunny days, there’s nothing nicer than packing up a picnic and heading out into the wilds to eat it. So why not bring a little of that outdoorsy fun to everyday meals by having a garden picnic?
You don’t need to go far to have big alfresco fun. We’ll show you how to make the most of the odd sunny evening or that spare hour you have after the kids finish school by getting out and eating together in the garden.
Make yourself comfortable
First things first, you’ll need to set up your picnic area. A rolling lawn or lush meadow does all the work for you, but let’s be real, most of us have a small garden or a yard, so you might need to put a little extra effort in. Take out some chairs if you like, but for that authentic picnic feel, you’ve got to get on the ground! Start with a picnic blanket, and add outdoor cushions to make hard surfaces feel a lot more comfy and cosy.
Your beautiful china dinnerware is great for inside the house, but it might not be the best option when you’re venturing outdoors. All that brick and concrete and gravel is just an accident waiting to happen, especially when you add sudden gusts of wind and overexcited kids and pets into the mix!
Choose sturdy melamine plates and plastic glasses for a safe, reusable option. Your normal cutlery will probably survive the trip to the garden, but for the full picnic effect you could grab some plastic cutlery too. If you’re feeling extra fancy, why not add a wine or champagne glass?
Then why not one-up a real picnic and finish off the meal with an ice cream or sundae?
Al fresco food ideas
Of course, there’s nothing to stop you taking your full Sunday roast outside if that floats your boat, but there are certain meals which lend themselves to a garden picnic.
Classic picnic food is the easiest choice. Start with a big salad and plenty of fresh bread, then add in finger food for an authentic picnic experience. Sausage rolls and scotch eggs always go down well, as do breadsticks, pasta salads, crisps, cheese cubes, veggie sticks and hummus, potato salad and sandwiches.
If you like your food hot, give one-pot dishes like risotto, filled pasta or shepherds pie a go.
It’s up to you – get set up, choose a meal to suit your mood and enjoy all the benefits of dining in the great outdoors without having to leave your garden!
For more picnic ideas, take a look at our blog on picnic planning.