Five essentials for the perfect summer picnic

No need to slave over a hot stove to put together some great dishes for family and friends

Picnicking is made easy when you leave the menu to the pros. Try one of Quality Foods’ delicious deli platters

Sponsored by Quality Foods | Impress Branded Content

 

If you can’t handle the heat, stay out of the kitchen – especially during the sweltering summer months.

Instead, keep your cool by making a reservation with Mother Nature and enjoy an alfresco lunch or dinner in the great outdoors.

With a summer picnic here on Vancouver Island, you can’t beat the view, ambience or affordability factor.

There’s also no gratuity required. Speaking of tips, you might want to consider these five picnic pointers when planning your next outdoor dining experience.

 

1- Take inventory

Before you plan your picnic, take inventory of the supplies you have on hand. While a picnic basket, and/or a cooler probably come to mind, thermal bags are gaining in popularity because of their versatility with hot or cold foods and everyday usefulness. These bags come in handy for everything from grocery shopping and road trips to picnicking.

For stability in transport, option for one with a rigid bottom, sewn handles and a zipper-top closure.

 

2- Ice ice baby

Chilled salads, ice-cold beverages, cold chicken and dips galore are popular picnic fare that go down great on a hot day, but can make you ill if you’re not careful.

To keep these items at a safe temperature –40F or colder – invest in an insulated cooler and/or ice packs.

If using a cooler, keep the ratio: 25 per cent ice and 75 per cent food.  Also, steer clear of packing any warm items in your cooler.

 

3.  Location is everything

Vancouver Island boasts plenty of beautiful picnic hot spots and hidden gems. Whether it’s an ocean view and sandy beach you crave or a woodland setting, complete with a waterfall, the choice is yours for the picknicking. Look for spots with ample shade to protect your food from spoiling and have the bug spray handy to ward off any pesky unwanted dining guests.

 

4 – Keep it Simple

For those short on time, picnicking is made easy when you leave the menu to the pros.

Try one of Quality Foods’ delicious deli platters, featuring assortments of fresh cut vegetables, fruit, meat, cheese, sandwiches, wraps, and other appetizers.

Beyond the traditional and trustworthy potato, egg and pasta salads are a new breed of healthy delicious sides featuring kale, quinoa or blueberries.

Nowadays, many grocery store deli departments are basically in-store commercial kitchens, much like a good quality restaurant. For example, QF can crank up your picnic basket with new hot or cold offerings like slow-cooked pulled pork, fall-off-the-bone barbecued ribs, grab and go crispy chicken, delicious sides, etc.

 

5- Fun Factor

Outdoor games and activities that are easy to transport and set up are always a must for any picnic. Whether it’s beanbag toss (cornhole), ladder toss or game of bocce, a little friendly competition will up the fun factor and help you burn off all those extra calories.

 

With these five picnic pointers in mind and plenty of sunshine still on the forecast, there’s no need to slave over a hot stove.

From mouth-watering already-prepared picnic fare to essentials like ice, hot dog buns and aluminum foil, Quality Foods has everything you’ll need to plan the perfect summer picnic.

 

Just Posted

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

Saanich police encourage safe driving habits as rain leads to pooling on roadways

Slow down, inspect vehicle ahead of driving in wet autumn weather

Three years for serial bank robber who hit Sidney branch

Lucas Bradwell was wanted for robberies in Sidney, Abbotsford and Vancouver

Victoria police seek suspect in parkade break and enter

Cycling gear, tools reported stolen from vehicle, storage locker

Almost half of Canadian university students fear they cannot pay rising tuitions

COVID-19 also diminishing expectations for job market

B.C.’s top doctor thanks supporters after revealing threats over COVID-19 measures

Dr. Bonnie Henry says COVID-19 has caused some people to lash out in anger and frustration out of fear

POLL: Do you agree with the decision to call a provincial election for Oct. 24?

British Columbians will put their social distancing skills to the test when… Continue reading

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Resumption of At-Sea Observer Prgrogram delayed

Emergency Electronic Monitoring Program still in place for groundfish trawl Option A vessels

B.C. VOTES 2020: Speculation tax misses speculators, B.C. Liberals say

Andrew Wilkinson, John Horgan clash over housing costs, solutions

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

NDP, Greens divided on pace of child care improvements in B.C. election campaign

NDP Leader John Horgan recommitted to $10-a-day child care and blamed the Greens for not supporting his efforts

Rare fish washes onto Whiffin Spit in Sooke

Deep water fish identified as ‘King-of-the-salmon’

Most Read