Picnic in Red and White
Summer is here, which means it's picnic season! When sun sets after 8PM and it stays warm outside until late in the evening, there's nothing better than having dinner al fresco. And if you have young children, the added benefit is that they can eat like hungry hyenas and you wouldn't worry about the crumbs on the ground. Furthermore, Travel Chic Dad's doing all the cooking, so I guess we'll be dining outdoors quite a lot this season!
First things first, we head outdoors after the day's work. Time to go for a little walk and watch the clouds go by.
Then we find ourselves a picnic table at a local park. No reservations needed, no lines, no waiting, just sit down and spread the tablecloth.
A red and white tablecloth just seems so perfect for summer. I like tablecloths in pure cotton, they feel crisp and wash well, and they tend to stand the test of time. Polka dots and gingham are both classic patterns, and they are like magic carpets that transport us to some movie picnic scenes in the 1950s!
We get the kids to participate by asking them to help collect dry branches for the fire. I assure you, this is a fun game for toddlers. Then we get the fire burning red hot. I always hear Jim Morrison singing "Come on baby light my fire" in the back of my mind at this moment. Does that happen to you, too?
We usually go straight to the point when it comes to picnics. I'm no Martha Stewart, there's usually not going to be a full table of appetizers like petits-fours, finger savories, or rainbow-colored dips. A hefty slab of T-Bone, corn on the cob, flash-split zucchinis (courgettes) are more likely to appear on our table.
Marinade for the meat? We can skip that, after all, a slab of juicy steak grilled on charcoal fire in its own fat is pretty close to perfection already.
The Man is on the fire, the kids are chasing squirrels, I think once in a while the mom should just chill, sit back, relax, enjoy la dolce far niente.
We have this red enamel picnic dining set that we reuse every time. I love that we can eat with real utensils instead of those fragile plastic or compostable forks and knives. The set has mugs, plates, bowls, and has a neat roll-up storage pouch for the utensils. I've learned from Bea Johnson of Zero Waste Home that wine can be best enjoyed outdoors in enamel cups because: A. you most likely won't be carrying glasses and B. wine can get that metallic taste if you use stainless steel containers. I am no Bea Johnson either so I couldn't resist the temptation to get matching red acrylic glasses for water, but hey, at least we'll be reusing them.
Grilled veggies, mature hard cheese, fresh cherries and bananas, and that grilled meaty goodness, we're all set.
And how great are cherries at the picnic table? They are sweet and tangy, and they're clothed in the most beautiful shade of ruby red. They are the perfect end notes to a summer picnic in red.
Let's toast to a lovely summer evening picnic with family!
What's a picnic if it doesn't end in spontaneous dancing on the table?
Cheers with cherries!
Picnic in Red and Travel On,