We’re all in agreement that picnics beat bought food every time.
They probably even beat a standard home cooked meal to be completely honest! Healthy, convenient and normally much more scenic than your closest McDonalds, picnics also offer the undeniable advantage of being able to totally customise your meal so it’s delicious as well as kid-friendly, adult-friendly and granny-friendly. Here are our top picnic picks!
There’s nothing wrong with a plain cheese sandwich on white bread, but you can make your picnic really special by just jazzing things up a tiny bit. Use ciabatta, French bread of crispy rolls and try some “gourmet” ingredients. Feta cheese, mustard, beetroot and basil ca all make your ordinary sandwiches impressive enough to keep the whole family happy. If you are using mayonnaise or tomatoes, keep the filling separate and put it on your bread just before you eat it to avoid those crispy rolls becoming a mushy mess.
There’s a reason potato salad is a feature of every single braai. It’s delicious, and pairs well with practically everything! We think it’s perfect with just mayonnaise, salt and pepper, but if you feel like livening it up you could add some spring onion, gherkin or even substitute mayo for yoghurt. It’s great for picnics because unlike lettuce, it doesn’t go limp or soggy with storage and it’s easy to keep cold in a cooler box.
Our top picks are grapes, watermelon and strawberries. Strawberries and grapes are, admittedly, a little bit easier to prepare and pack and are less messy to eat so in terms of kid-proofing your picnic experience, we’d go with that. On a hot summer day though, there’s nothing more refreshing than a slice of watermelon.
Grapes can also serve a dual purpose. Freeze them beforehand and let them act as ice cubes. Not only will they keep your wine from getting diluted, they also won’t make a mess if it gets hot and they melt.
If there’s no cheese, can it even be called a picnic? No, we didn’t think so. Whether you’re into cheddar and salticrax or blue cheese and rosemary-encrusted wafer biscuits is neither here nor there in this case. All that matters is that your favourite cheese must be present at a picnic, along with some kind of crunchy cheese vessel to carry it….into your mouth.
As long as you’re confident in your cooler box’s ability to do its job, then a selection of cold meats and olives is definitely a winner in terms of topping off your picnic basket the right way. Ham, chicken, salami, beef or any cured or smoked meat are great choices. When you whip out a cold meat platter along with your French bread and delicious cheese, you’ll feel like you could actually be sitting in front of the Eiffel tower because you are just that sophisticated. Plus, cold meats go perfectly with everything else on this list. We know you’re going to make a cracker, cheese and salami sandwich – and why not? You’d be mad to pass up the perfect pinic flavour combination!