Sunny days are finally here! Blue skies and a gentle breeze make for perfect picnic weather. So ditch the dining room, pack a blanket, get the cooler ready and take it outdoors! We’ve gathered a few of our favourite picnic foods to get you started.
CHICKEN SALAD SANDWICHES
Servings: 2-4 | Prep time: 10 min
- 8 ozs cooked chicken breast, cubed
- 8 ozs mayonnaise
- 2 ozs celery, finely chopped
- 2 ozs pecans, chopped
- 4 ozs red apples, chopped
- 4 ozs red seedless grapes, halved
- 4-8 slices thick honey wheat bread
- 2-4 lettuce leaves
- In a large bowl toss together chicken, mayonnaise, celery, pecans, apples, and grapes until well combined.
- Place lettuce on the bread or bun of your choice. Top with 2 scoops of sandwich filling and spread evenly. Close the sandwich with another piece of bread.
- Repeat to make 1 to 3 more sandwiches. Serve and enjoy!
HUMMUS AVOCADO WRAPS
Servings: 4 | Prep Time: 15
- 2 large flour tortillas
- 4 tbsp hummus *
- ½ cup greens your choice
- 1 avocado, thinly sliced
- ½ red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
- ¼ cup red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- Everything bagel seasoning to taste (optional)
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
* Continue reading for hummus recipe
- Heat tortillas in microwave for 10-15 seconds just to soften.
- Spread 2 tbsp hummus on each tortilla.
- Arrange greens on top of each tortilla, then add avocado slices, bell pepper, red onion, lemon juice and a sprinkle of Everything Bagel seasoning (if desired). Roll tortillas up tightly and serve or wrap and chill in the fridge for later.
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained (15oz), or 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas
- ½ tsp baking soda (if you’re using canned chickpeas)
- ¼ cup lemon juice (1 ½ to 2 lemons)
- 1 med clove garlic, roughly chopped
- ½ tsp fine sea salt, to taste
- ½ cup tahini
- 2-4 tbsp ice water, more as needed
DIRECTIONS FOR MAKING HUMMUS:
- Place chickpeas in a medium saucepan, add baking soda and cover with several inches of water. Bring to a boil over high heat and continue boiling, reducing heat, if necessary, until the chickpeas are soft (approx 20 min). Drain them in a strainer and run them under cool water for about 30 seconds. Set aside.
- In a food processor or blender, combine the lemon juice, garlic and salt. Process until the garlic is very finely chopped, then let the mixture rest so the garlic flavour can mellow, (10 min). Add the tahini to the food processor and blend until the mixture is thick and creamy, stopping to scrape down any tahini stuck to the sides and bottom of the processor as necessary.
- While running the food processor, drizzle in 2 tbsp ice water. Scrape down the food processor, and blend until the mixture is ultra smooth, pale and creamy. Add the cumin & chickpeas to the food processor. While blending, drizzle in the olive oil. Blend until the mixture is super smooth. Add more ice water by the tbsp if necessary to achieve a super creamy texture.
- Taste, and adjust as necessary (you may want a little more salt or lemon juice)
Prep time: 15 min | Cook time: 20 min
- 1 can black beans, drained (16 oz)
- 1 can black-eyed peas, drained (16 oz)
- 1 can diced tomatoes, drained (16 oz)
- 2 cups frozen corn kernels, thawed
- ½ med onion, diced
- ¼ med green bell pepper, finely chopped
- ½ cup pickled jalapeno peppers, chopped
- ½ tsp garlic salt
- 1 cup Italian salad dressing
- ¾ cup cilantro, chopped
- In a large bowl, gently mix the black beans, black-eyed peas, diced tomatoes, corn, onion, bell pepper, and jalapenos until well combined. Flavour it with garlic salt. Add the Italian dressing and cilantro, and toss to coat.
- Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 20 minutes or up to 3 days.
- Serve the dip with tortilla chips.
Servings: 8 | Prep Time : 30 min | Cook Time : 1 hr
- 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- salt and pepper
- 1 ⅛ cups cold butter
- 15 tbsp water
- 1 lb beef topside or round steak
- 1 ½ med onion
- 3 med potatoes
- 1 med carrot
- 3 tbsp beef stock
- 1 egg
- Pastry: Sift the flour into a bowl with a pinch of salt. Cut the butter into small pieces and spread over the flour. Use your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Sprinkle the water over the flour and mix to form a firm dough. Shape into a ball, cover with plastic and chill for about 30 minutes before rolling.
- Prepare the filling: Cut the meat into tiny pieces and place into a large mixing bowl. Peel and finely dice the onions, potatoes and carrot and add to the bowl with the meat.
- Season the mixture with salt and pepper and add the beef stock, mix well and set aside.
- Shaping and filling: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line two baking trays with baking paper.
- Divide the dough into 8 even portions and shape each into a ball. Roll each ball on a lightly floured surface to a ¼ inch thickness. Using a plate, cut each rolled out piece of dough into a round about 7 inches in diameter.
- Divide the filling between the rounds, placing the filling along the centre of the dough circle. Bring the opposite sides of the dough over the filling and pinch the edges together. Place the Cornish pasties onto a lined baking tray, with the seam side up. Lightly beat the egg, then brush the egg over the pastry using a pastry brush. Then use the tip of a sharp pointed knife to make a small cut on one side of the pastry to allow steam to escape.
- Place in preheated (400°F) oven and bake for 20 minutes then reduce oven temp to 360°F bake for 40 more minutes.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before serving. These can be eaten hot or at room temperature.
CREAMY GRAPE SALAD
Servings: 12 | Prep time: 15 min
- 2 lbs seedless green grapes
- 2 lbs seedless purple grapes
- 8oz cream cheese (room temperature)
- 8oz container sour cream
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ cup brown sugar, firmly packed
- ½ cup pecans, finely chopped
- Wash the grapes and dry thoroughly with paper towels. Place the grapes in a large serving bowl.
- In another bowl, combine the cream cheese, sour cream, granulated sugar and vanilla.
- Mix well using an electric mixer.
- Pour the mixture over the grapes and combine until all the grapes are generously coated.
- Chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
- Sprinkle with brown sugar and pecans on top just before serving.
FRUIT SPRING ROLLS
Servings: 6 rolls | Prep time :10 min | Cook time: 10 min
for spring rolls:
- 8 strawberries
- 2 kiwis
- 1 mango
- 1 apple
- ¼ lemon
- 1 cup baby spinach
- 6 rice paper wraps
- For caramel sauce:
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- ¼ cup brown sugar, packed
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Pinch of sea salt
For chocolate sauce:
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup semisweet chocolate chips
- Cut the strawberries, kiwis and mango into small pieces. Core the apple, removing any seeds and cut into small pieces. Drizzle some lemon juice over the apples to prevent from browning.
- In a large pot, add warm water and soak the rice paper wraps for about 20-30 seconds, gently swirling them around. The wrap should be pliable, but still slightly firm, as it will soften while you put the filling into them.
- Put the rice paper wrap smooth side down and arrange the fruits on one half of the wrap. Fold in the nearest end over the filling, fold in 2 sides of the wrap, and then tightly, but carefully roll it.
- To prepare the caramel sauce for dipping, place the butter and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat.
- Melt the butter and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add heavy cream and cook for about 5 minutes, whisking frequently. Add vanilla extract and salt.
- To make the chocolate sauce for dipping, heat the heavy cream in the microwave for 30 seconds or so. Pour it over chocolate chips and let it stand for a minute. Stir until smooth.