Did you know that it was International Picnic Day on Sunday 18th June? Nope, I wouldn’t have done either if it weren’t for Tesco sliding into my inbox about it. Most food holidays pass me by pretty much unnoticed these days, but eating alfresco is something I’ve come to get really excited about in the last couple of months – as you’ll already know if you keep up to date with Happy Sunday – so I figured this was one worth writing about.
Tesco have just launched a new mediterranean inspired Deli range consisting of lots of little bites that are edible both hot and cold, making them just about perfect for all of your picnicky needs. The Tesco team sent us a selection of their new treats – along with pretty much everything else we could possibly need for the perfect picnic – over the weekend so that I could bring you this little slice of fun in the sun.
Eating outside is really good for you. I hear you, I’m a massive hippy and I’m constantly saying stuff like that – so if you don’t want to take my word for it, that’s totally cool. A couple of studies cited in this Business Insider article (written a few years back to convince workers to take their lunch breaks outside) found that the whole being outdoors thing seems to reduce cortisol (the stress hormone) which can only be a positive thing, right?
Aside from the scientifically provable benefits of chowing down on good food in the fresh air, alfresco dining is just more fun. It’s a shake up from the routine, an opportunity to try new food, a chance to really connect with the person you’re eating with away from the constricts of four familiar walls and distracting screens of one kind or another. I am 100% guilty of not paying enough attention to the actual human beings in front of me because I’m staring at my phone, and I think being outside really decreases the likelihood of that for me because it feels so much more inappropriate when you’re literally surrounded by the beauty of the English countryside.
Speaking of the beautiful English countryside, let’s talk location. I’m lucky enough to have the Sussex Downs pretty much on my actual doorstep. This lush field is about a five minute walk from Tom’s place. If we didn’t fancy greenery, we could have headed to the beach, and if we wanted something a little more urban then we might have plonked ourselves down in front of the Pavilion. I’m not intentionally bragging about the glorious set of options we have for picnicking in Brighton come summer time, more demonstrating that if you think about it for long enough, you’ll probably come up with a few half decent potential spots within walking distance of your house. If you have no idea where to find somewhere lovely to BYO food to near you, I’ll leave you in the very capable hands of The National Trust.
Booze is not essential but definitely encouraged, and prosecco is almost always my go-to. Unless there are pre-mixed cocktail cans knocking about somewhere on offer, those are a bit of alright when it comes to picnicking – and lighter than big glass bottles, a plus when neither you nor your boyfriend drive and you’re lugging your hamper around like Buckaroo.
Food. Food, food, food. Sometimes, I like to go all out and homemake every single little thing I take on a picnic from scratch. I once packed a surprise one for Tom containing chorizo sausage rolls and rhubarb and custard cake. While a taste sensation, it took me all night to prepare and all of about twenty minutes for us to demolish. Sometimes, it’s far nicer to pop down to the supermarket, grab a few bits and be on your way. The new Tesco Deli range offered us that convenience, and didn’t let us down in the taste department either.
Pictured above is my favourite from the range – it was a toss up between these and the sweetcorn fritters – the mozzarella and tomato pot. The cheese tasted of grand quality, the tomatoes were slow roasted and spot on, and each mouthful was bursting with summery flavour. Pictured below are little bits of cheese wrapped in chorizo. Yes, you heard me correctly. No, this is not a drill. That’s something that you can buy and put in your mouth. Most of the new Deli arrivals can currently be found in store at 3 for £5 (if you and bae spend a tenner between you that’s 6 different small bites to be savoured together, count me in).
Finally, we move on to a picnic element that I had neglected up until this weekend: games. Why didn’t anyone alert me to how much fun could me had mucking around playing sort-of-pictionary with a chalkboard or frolicking about throwing hoops at sticks in between courses? Whatever your preference when it comes to entertainment of the outdoor variety, make sure you take something with you on your next venture, it’s 100% worth the teensie bit of extra weight.
Don’t forget that it’s supposed to be fun. Don’t over plan, don’t stress over it, just make sure you’ve definitely got enough food and water and everything else will work itself out. Where’s your favourite picnic spot? Hit me up in the comments!
I’ll leave you with these tips from Tesco themselves..
Disclaimer: this isn’t a sponsored post but Tesco did provide us with all the kit and caboodle to have a bangers picnic, so a big thank you to them!