Embrace Alfresco Dining:

5 Great Recipes For An Outdoor Banquet

Take your dinner party outside this summer and embrace alfresco dining. Here are five recipes that will make you want to rediscover your garden.

The long, warm summer evenings are so inviting that there’s simply no excuse not to eat outside! If you’re planning a dinner party or a romantic meal, why not embrace your garden and dine outside?

We get used to our routine of eating inside every day but when the sun shines, break this trend and take your dinner into the garden. Many people are put off by flies, wasps and sticky tables but dining outside can be magical, romantic and quite simply: fun.

Here are five great ideas for a delicious outdoor banquet:

  1. 1.       Ginger beer 

Firstly, let’s start with the drinks. When the sun shines, a cooling jug of something fruity like lemonade, tropical juice, Pimm’s or cider might be just what you’re looking for. However the fiery flavour of ginger beer equally refreshing and this quintessentially English drink is easy to make at home.

Homemade ginger beer is often much nicer than the kind you can buy in shops because the ginger is more fiery. If you like your drinks to be hot, peppery and refreshing then this will be for you!

  1. 2.       Tuscan Style Risotto

This risotto perfectly blends creaminess and nuttiness to create a smooth bowl of delight! Risotto is not only a crowd (or table) pleaser but its distinctly summery flavours of white wine and herbs make it the perfect choice for alfresco dining.

What’s great about this recipe is that you can keep it simple, or add whatever you happen to have in cupboard like spinach, asparagus or mushrooms.

  1. 3.       Roast Pepper and Salmon Platter

This wholesome salad is fresh and satisfying. Fish is an ideal choice for a hot summer’s day as it’s much lighter than red meat. Combine salmon with rocket, balsamic vinegar, new potatoes, roasted pepper and anchovies, and you’ll find this salad certainly has some bite to it!

The colourful combination of ingredients is a feast for the eyes too, making it the perfect centrepiece for your garden banquet. This dish would work well as a starter, main, or even as part of a buffet.

  1. 4.       Cheese and Chive Spread

This dish works well as a starter or as a cheesy dessert for those who prefer savoury to sweet. It is an incredibly simple recipe of Red Leicester, mayonnaise, mustard and chive and you quite simply chop, grate and stir together!

This creamy cheese spread works well with crackers, baguettes or even on toast; delicious, light and packed with the flavours of summer.

  1. 5.       Pear and Almond Tart

Pear and almond tart is fruity, sweet, nutty – perfect for a summer’s day. It brings to mind Parisian cafés and cobbled streets and hopefully you can conjure up some of these feelings when you bring out your delicious tart.

 

With any luck, this has given you some ideas for a garden banquet this summer.  With lighter evenings, start setting the table for your delicious feast.   I’m sure like me, once you’ve dined alfresco once, you won’t want to eat inside for the rest of the summer!

Do you know of any great alfresco dining ideas? Have you tried any of these recipes? Please share your thoughts with us.