Picnics are so much fun! I love meeting up with friends in the park, at the beach or at an outdoor movie to enjoy time outdoors together this time of year. This summer, Malibu Country Mart is hosting a outdoor movie series on the lawn, which offers the perfect opportunity to sit under the stars with my twins or a few friends to enjoy an outdoor meal and movie.
There are many picnic basket options out there, but my favorite is a traditional wicker basket filled with beautiful melamine ware. Look for one that has enough dinnerware for at least four people and contains everything you need — plates, glasses, flatware and even handy things like corkscrews and a cutting knife. Bring along an old quilt and you have everything you need to create a beautiful, classic setting.
I like making sandwiches and wraps for picnics — they’re filling and hand-held so they’re easy to eat (unlike trying to balance a salad on a plastic plate on your lap!). Here are my two go-to recipes for picnic-ready sandwiches.
Grilled Smoked Salmon Sammies
This sandwich is a grown-up version of grilled cheese. It’s best to make these as close to picnic time departure as possible, but I promise you, they are worth the effort!
- Whole wheat bread
- Smear of cream cheese
- Sliced smoked salmon
- Sliced tomatoes
- Sliced red onions
- Pat of butter
Smear cream cheese on bread and add a layer salmon, then a layer of sliced onions, finish with a layer of thinly sliced tomatoes. Close sandwich and spread butter on bread. Grill the sandwich until cream cheese melts to delicious gooeyness. Wrap sandwiches first in wax paper then in tin foil to keep them warm.
Cobb Salad Wrap
- Whole wheat tortilla
- Crumbled blue cheese
- Sliced turkey
- Sliced tomatoes
- Turkey bacon
Grill bacon until crispy. Spread mayonnaise on wrap and crumble blue cheese all over. Next, layer on turkey, tomatoes, bacon and arugula. Roll wrap and cut at an angle.
Dessert and Drinks
Make dessert simple by bringing your favorite cookies. Malibu Kitchen & Gourmet Country Market sells some outrageously crispy chocolate chip cookies that are my go-to if I don’t have time to bake my own. Bring a nice bottle of wine (if your park allows) and sparkling water and you have everything you need to enjoy an outdoor feast with friends and family.
Photo credits: Elizabeth Lamont