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Foodbuzz 24×24: Picnic Party in the Park

May 30, 2010 Print This Post Print This Post

Summer time is upon us! Well technically summer doesn’t begin until June 21st this year, but clearly that’s for places other than Texas as we’ve already regularly had 90-degree weather for weeks now. Memorial day weekend always kicks off summer in my mind! When Foodbuzz put out the call for submission’s for this month’s 24×24 event — I knew I wanted to have a picnic (before it gets too hot of course). I knew that a picnic would be a great way to kick off our summer — good food & good company! I knew that I wanted a simple, portable, no-fuss menu for our Memorial Day weekend Picnic Party and this is what I came up with:

Strawberry Lemonade Spritzers
Vintage Soda Pop
Water

Spicy BLT Wraps
Ham & Avocado Sandwiches
Mustard Vinaigrette Potato Salad
Chips

Fresh Fruit Salad
Pound Cake

Want to plan a picnic yourself? Here are some useful planning and packaging tips and tricks:

Planning Tips

  • Keep it simple — consider simple, easy, convenient foods. You don’t want to spend a lot of time preparing/setting up
  • Be organized — using checklists helps ensure nothing gets left behind. Make a packing checklist (I’ve provided a guide below) and a food checklist for the fridge so you don’t run off forgetting the chips or something
  • Avoid dairy & mayonnaise-based foods whenever possible, as they go bad quickly
  • Food should not sit out at room temperature for more than 2-hours due to harmful bacteria growth so unless you’ll be getting home immediately, throw your leftovers away.
  • Precut as much as possible in advance into serving sizes, such as brownies,etc.
  • Freeze drinks when possible. They’ll stay cool longer and can be used to help keep food cold (if stored in some cooler/container).
  • If possible, pack cold food in a cooler separate from the drinks, as the drink cooler will be opened frequently
  • Hot/warm foods can be transported using thermoses

Packing Checklist

  • Soft blanket(s)
  • Tarp to put beneath your blanket in case of wet grass — we learned that one the hard way!
  • Tablecloth (if utilizing picnic tables)
  • Unbreakable plates, flatware, serveware, cups, napkins/wet wipes
  • Sun screen, insect repellants
  • Corkscrew and/or bottle opener
  • Cutting board/paring knife
  • Trash bag(s)

The food was delicious and we had a great time relaxing and hanging out with friends! We can’t wait to do it again in the fall! The recipes for a lot of the menu items will be popping up on the blog over the next few weeks but I couldn’t post without leaving you with at least one recipe; this Strawberry Lemonade Spritzer is a perfect refreshing summer beverage!

Thanks Foodbuzz for sponsoring another great event and Happy Memorial Day!

Strawberry Lemonade Spritzer

3 cups strawberries, hulled & roughly chopped
2 Tbsp sugar
8 cups prepared lemonade
Club Soda

In a small food processor, combine strawberries & sugar. Puree until smooth. Strain if desired (I don’t mind the chunkiness). Combine strawberry puree & lemonade and refrigerate at least one hour. Just prior to serving combine lemonade & club soda (I prefer a ratio of 2 parts lemonade to 1 part club soda).

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Mara @ What's For Dinner? May 30, 2010 at 6:45 pm

What a great time!! I’d love to try the spritzer… that’ll be on my list soon!

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shannon May 30, 2010 at 10:01 pm

just wanted to let you know that I linked your blog in my blog today! Thanks for a great salmon recipe!

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Pam May 31, 2010 at 11:50 am

This must be Ethans favorite fishing spot. I think we have already missed the window for picnics in south Texas as the temp is already reaching 100 deg. We are B B Qing ribs and sausage today but will probably move indoors with the AC to eat. Have a Happy Memorial Day and remember all those who give so much for our freedoms.

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Dawn Hutchins June 1, 2010 at 9:06 am

Fun! We had a cookout but will have to do a picnic soon as it’s going to be too hot here too!

Reply

KC June 1, 2010 at 12:38 pm

this looks wonderful! i just discovered a park with a pond in our area and I cannot wait to talk along walk around it and maybe a picnic!!
The spritzer looks yummy too!
xoxo
KC

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