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Three Tips for Hosting a Picnic Lunch

We partnered with Kristin Schell of The Turquoise Table. Check out her helpful hospitality tips and picnic ideas for hosting a casual lunch for friends and neighbors.

Peachy Neighbors

I can always tell when my neighbor Doris is home because she leaves her white-paneled front door open. A thin, glass storm door keeps the bugs out and the cool air in.

Recently, I noticed things were pretty quiet around Doris’ house. Her closed front door was the telltale sign. One morning, I wandered over to check on her. I rang the bell a few times and peered in the side yard, then figured she was most likely visiting her daughter or out at the ranch.

A few days later, a brown paper bag filled with fresh peaches showed up on the Turquoise Table. There was no note, but I knew Doris had left the fruit even before I listened to her voicemail.

“I’ve been busy as a bee. Check your Turquoise Table, I left you a little something from the ranch. I’ll be back home in a few days. Love you.”

picnic lunch

Rhythm of Summer

Our neighborhood takes on a different rhythm in summertime. The predictable daily school routines and work patterns are off-kilter. Summer brings a refreshing pace, for sure. But with all the coming and going, I miss seeing everyone on a regular basis.

Inspired by Doris’ delicious peaches, and bacon left over from breakfast, I decided to kick our summer sandwich game up a notch.

Plus, it was time to reconnect with our friends.

When it’s too hot to cook, a picnic lunch is the perfect solution to bring neighbors and friends together. A quick text to a few neighbors and our picnic lunch was set.

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Simple Sandwich Fix

A far cry from the standard peanut butter and jelly, these tasty, easy-to-assemble sandwiches boast the essential flavors of summer. Basil and peaches! For an added measure of nostalgia, I like to serve our favorite pimento cheese on thin white bread, too.

July 25th Piminto Cheese Picnic Lunch

Pile the sandwiches on a breadboard or serving tray and head out to the Turquoise Table. Fruit salad or vine-ripe tomatoes are delicious additions. Anything juicy and oven-free!

July 25 Blog Post Bacon Arugula Peach Sandwiches

Bacon, Peach & Arugula Sandwiches

Ingredients

  • 8 slices thick-cut bacon
  • 4 Ciabatta rolls
  • ¼ cup pesto (store bought or homemade)
  • 2 peaches, halved, pitted and thinly sliced
  • Arugula, for topping

Instructions

Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat, turning a few times until crisp, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.

Toast the bread and spread evenly with the pesto. Divide the peaches, bacon and arugula among half of the bread slices; top with the remaining bread slices.

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Tips for Hosting a Picnic Lunch at the Turquoise Table

  1. Don’t cook! When the temperature is blazing, keep things cool in the kitchen. Sandwiches and salads are perfect picnic table fare.
  2. Casual cool. As we like to say, “if you aren’t barefoot or in flip flops you’re over dressed.” Come as you are.
  3. Conversation = Connection. Make space for meaningful conversation. It’s not about the food being served, but those who are gathered around the table.

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