We all know that not all picnics are created equal, and a meal outside does not a party make if the food isn’t right, the bugs are incessantly biting, and you leave the wine tool in the car after hiking up a hill like a pack mule. A little bit of forethought will make a huge difference.
1. Making a thorough checklist is Standard Operating Procedure for off-event caterers and is a great habit to develop. Make a list of all the food and drink and the necessary serving utensils.
2. Picnics are fun only if everyone is comfortable. No one can be comfortable with mosquitoes or menacing horseflies buzzing about. Citronella candles and insect repellent are worthy additions to the picnic tote.
3. Being outdoors is no reason to disregard the need for proper tableware. Paper plates and plastic utensils have no panache! Look for reusable, lightweight and durable plastic or bamboo plates and “silverware.” Reusable sets not only are better for the environment, but they also make for a prettier table — or blanket, as the case may be.
4. Food safety can be a real concern. Foods that should be refrigerated should not be left at room temperature for more than two hours. It’s important to keep them cold!
Check out Virginia’s Down-Home Comfort recipes and plan your next picnic.