Blog | Summer picnic recipes
From crunchy summer rolls with zingy dips to coconut curry popcorn and basil-watermelon coolers - these recipes will bring a new lease of life to the traditional picnic spread, and introduce your young people to a whole new world of flavours. Grab a blanket. You’re all set.
Top tip: Why not prepare these with members of the group eager to complete their Cook Activity Badge?
Summer rolls, dippy dips
These South Asian summer rolls are tangy, zingy and refreshing. They’re also fun to create, and infinitely customizable.
If your young people are helping with the prep, set out a bunch of fillings, and let them choose their own combinations. As a starting point, we recommend the following recipe.
For the summer rolls:
1 carrot, shredded
1 avocado, chopped
1 punnet cherry tomatoes, finely chopped
2 large handfuls of coriander
1 large handful of basil
1 large handful of mint
12 rice paper wrappers
For the dippy dips:
Juice of 1 lime
1 tbsp honey, or maple syrup
4 tbsp coconut milk
½ tsp grated ginger
1 tsp soy sauce, or tamari
Prep all of your veggies and herbs, laying them out on the board next to you.
Fill a large bowl with warm water.
Dampen a clean tea towel and lay it out next to your bowl of water.
Lower each individual rice paper wrapper into the warm water, and leave it there until it has just softened. This should only take a few seconds.
Remove the wrapper from the bowl, and place it on the damp tea towel.
Lay a little bit of avocado and carrot, a few slices of cherry tomato, some coriander, and a few mint and basil leaves onto the wrapper, about a third of the way up.
Fold the bottom third of the wrapper up over the mixture, and tuck it in tight. Then, fold in each side to make a straight edge and close up each end of the roll. Roll up and away from you. Press down the edge and lay it facedown.
For the dippy dips, shake all of the ingredients together in a jar until smooth.
Top tip: Though they’re perfect for picnic-ing, the rolls can stick to one another during transport. To avoid this, wrap each roll in a cos lettuce leaf before you set off. This will act as a protective layer.
Celery Sticks, reinvented
Ants on a branch! Beans on a stalk! With a little imagination, the humble celery stick is transformed into an interactive snack.
Ants on a branch
Wash, trim and cut your celery into small pieces
Spread peanut butter into the recessed side of the celery
Decorate with raisins (ants)
Beans on a stalk
As above - substitute peanut butter for guacamole, and raisins for mixed beans
Rockin’ poppin’ corn
The beauty of popcorn lies in its versatility and portability. It doesn’t matter if your campsite is lacking a full kitchen. A portable stove will do splendidly.
Coconut curry popcorn
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
1 tablespoon curry powder
2 teaspoons ginger powder
Heat coconut oil over medium heat in a large stock pot with a lid.
Add kernels, cover with a lid, and cook, shaking the pot occasionally to prevent burning.
Continue to cook until popping slows.
Remove from heat and add the coconut flakes, coconut oil, curry powder, and ginger powder. Put the lid back on and shake vigorously until popcorn is well coated.
Cover with lid and shake vigorously for 10-15 seconds.
Store in tupperware.
Old cinema style
Melt 1 stick of butter in a small saucepan, over a low heat. Skim off the foam and solids; drizzle over hot popcorn, and toss with 2 teaspoons of salt. Store in tupperware.
Watermelon and basil juice
Cool down with this refreshing mix of juicy watermelon and tangy basil.
1 small watermelon, or ¼ of a big watermelon - sliced, with the outer skin peeled
1 lemon, peeled and quartered
1 cup fresh basil leaves
Pop all of the ingredients into a blender and whizz. Store in a flask, and serve over ice.