Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Make These Now: 3 Perfect Summertime Picnic Recipes

Prep for Riverlife's Party at the Pier with these ideas.




PHOTO COURTESY THE ALMOND EATER
 

I'm going to start this post with something almost annoying as Christmas countdowns in September: We only have three more weekends left before the unofficial end of summer. But instead of moping about it, let's take a glass-half-full approach and think about how we are going to send summer off with a bang.

This is the time to pack our lunches and eat outdoors. No eating at your desk! This also is the time to pack our picnic baskets on the weekends and hike, bike, kayak, run, walk, swim — anything but sit on the couch and veg (which is the most pejorative use of this term, by the way) — and have our meals on blankets, out in nature.

Yes, picnics! Now is the time. To help us along, I asked three of my favorite Pittsburgh food bloggers to share their favorite picnic recipes to give us a kickstart: Cauliflower Meatballs from Erin at The Almond Eater, Lemon Chickpea Salad from Kelly at House Cafe and a wonderful Gazpacho from my friends at The Hungry Hounds.

Finally, there only is one way to cap the last weekend of summer — with the most stylish picnic of all. On Aug. 29, there is just one place to be: Riverlife's Posh Picnic!

On this beautiful Saturday, the North Shore Riverfront Amphitheater at Rivers Casino will be filled with everyone at their picnic finest: Gatsby, gingham, Mad Men-inspired outfits, wine, great food. I cannot wait.

To get you ready, I have three delicious picnic recipes to share for one posh party — summer still is going strong.
 



 


PHOTO COURTESY THE ALMOND EATER
 

Cauliflower Quinoa Meatballs

Recipe from The Almond Eater
Makes 20-24 meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cauliflower head
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • ¾ cup gluten free breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
     

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cook quinoa according to instructions on the package (over stovetop with 2 cups water); at the same time, cook cauliflower in a separate pot over stovetop until soft.
  3. Once cauliflower and quinoa are done, add them to the food processor, along with the garlic, so all three ingredients are combined. You may need to do this twice, as not all of the quinoa and cauliflower will fit in the processor at once. Remove and place in large bowl.
  4. Add breadcrumbs, parley, oregano and Italian seasoning, and stir by hand. Place bowl in refrigerator for 10-15 minutes, allowing mixture to harden a bit.
  5. Roll mixture into meatballs — the size is up to you. Mine were between golf-ball and tennis-ball size.
  6. Heat a bit of olive oil in a large skillet and place meatballs in skillet. Cook until slightly golden brown and transfer to a baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes or until meatballs are firm.
  8. Remove from oven and enjoy!
     

Erin is the writer and recipe developer behind the blog The Almond Eater, where she shares recipes of all kinds. Her main goal is to spend less time in the kitchen so she has more time to do other things, including teaching barre classes, doing freelance photography and working out (we all want that right?).



 


PHOTO COURTESY HOUSE CAFE
 

Lemon Chickpea Salad

Recipe from House Cafe

Ingredients:

  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 yellow pepper, small diced
  • 1 red pepper, small diced
  • 1 pint baby bella mushrooms, diced
  • 2 tablespoons Vegenaise or mayonnaise
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • Chives (garnish to taste)
  • Almonds (chopped, garnish to taste)
  • Endive leaves (for serving, to scoop)
     

Directions:

  1. Saute the mushrooms in the coconut oil for about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste after they cool down.
  2. Combine the chickpeas, peppers and mushrooms with 2 tablespoons of Vegenaise or mayonnaise and the juice of 1 lemon. Mix and add more salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Add chopped almonds and chives into the salad mixture.
  4. When plating, top with even more almonds and chives.
  5. Serve with endive leaves for scooping. Enjoy!
     

Kelly Kinsey is the blogger behind House Cafe. A behavioral therapist by day and an awesome cook by night (and weekends), she's also a mom who shares her love for food with her two little ones. I love following her cooking adventures!
 



 


PHOTO COURTESY THE HUNGRY HOUNDS
 

Gazpacho

Recipe by The Hungry Hounds
Serves 8

Ingredients:

  • 4 large tomatoes, ends removed
  • 2 medium cucumbers, ends removed
  • 2 red bell peppers, seeds and ends removed
  • 1 large sweet onion, peeled and ends removed
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeds and end removed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves crushed
  • 4 cups tomato juice
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 cup diced chives, basil, cilantro and/or green onions (for garnish)
     

Directions:

  1. Make this soup a minimum of 4 hours prior to serving to allow the flavors to meld and deepen, and to allow the soup time to thoroughly chill.
  2. Finely dice (about 1/4-inch cubes) the vegetables — tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, onion and jalapeno pepper. This step can be done by hand or in a food processor. If using a food processor, start by quartering the vegetables. Note that if you are using a small food processor, you may have to process the vegetables in batches to avoid pureeing them. Chop/pulse the vegetables together for approximately 12-15 pulses, until they are chopped into small pieces but not yet pureed.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the chopped vegetables, salt, pepper, garlic, tomato juice, red wine vinegar, and lemon juice. Mix to combine. Add 6 ice cubes to kick-start the cooling processes and to provide the remaining liquid. Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours prior to serving, preferably overnight.
  4. Prior to serving, taste the soup and adjust seasoning and spice to your preference.
  5. Serve the soup very cold, we like to put our serving dishes in the fridge or freezer briefly prior to serving to enhance the cold temperature. You can serve gazpacho with additional diced tomatoes, peppers and/or cucumbers on top, along with a liberal garnish of fresh herbs. This soup keeps well for up to 3 days covered and refrigerated.
     

The Hungry Hounds is named after Paul and Rebecca Shetler Fast's two lovable dogs, Leo and Charlie. I love this couple's blog because it reflects their globe-trotting backgrounds. Rebecca grew up in Ontario and lived in Europe, while Paul grew up in Tanzania and has lived all over the United States. They met in Ethiopia and got engaged in Thailand, and they bring all corners of the globe into their recipes.

 

Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Brazen Kitchen:

How to Make the Easiest Pear Tart

How to Make the Easiest Pear Tart

Celebrate fall by having this beautiful dessert.
Best Bets for Pittsburgh Restaurant Week 2012

Best Bets for Pittsburgh Restaurant Week 2012

Brazen Kitchen: This weekend, expand your palate with some injera, yucca and nopales (plus a recipe for Kik Alitcha -- What?!)
Cider Chai with Ginger and Kuzu

Cider Chai with Ginger and Kuzu

Here it is, the cure for what ails us this holiday season: overindulgence.
Quick and Rustic Peach Tart

Quick and Rustic Peach Tart

Brazen Kitchen shows you how to highlight this season’s Pennsylvania peaches (better than Georgia's!)
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Angling for Tranquility: The Lure of Kayak Fishing

Angling for Tranquility: The Lure of Kayak Fishing

Kayak fishing is growing in popularity as anglers discover the peaceful joys of casting a line from the water's surface.
MultiStories: Pittsburgh's Art Deco Obelisk – The Gulf Building

MultiStories: Pittsburgh's Art Deco Obelisk – The Gulf Building

As the Gulf Building rose into Pittsburgh skyline in the early 1930s, the prospects of its owner were headed in the opposite direction.
Meet Pittsburgh's 40 Under 40 Honorees for 2018

Meet Pittsburgh's 40 Under 40 Honorees for 2018

For two decades, Pittsburgh Magazine and PUMP have presented the annual 40 Under 40 list. And every year, 40 people who have been alive for less than four decades are chosen because of their career accomplishments, dogged volunteer work and commitment to the Pittsburgh region. This year is no different. Read on to learn more about some of our very best neighbors.
Restaurant Review: Pie for Breakfast

Restaurant Review: Pie for Breakfast

Pittsburgh gets an updated, all-day diner with a sense of place from the owners of Legume Bistro and Butterjoint.
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags


Halloween in Pittsburgh: How to Embrace the Fright

Halloween in Pittsburgh: How to Embrace the Fright

From haunted houses and scary movies to pumpkin patches and zombie bars –– we are here to help you experience as much of the ghoulish holiday as you dare.

Comments

“First Man” Author to Appear at Heinz History Center

“First Man” Author to Appear at Heinz History Center

James R. Hansen, author of the authorized Neil Armstrong biography, will speak about the astronaut’s life on Nov. 1.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
Spirit Plans Sensory Bending Benefit Dinner

Spirit Plans Sensory Bending Benefit Dinner

Pittsburgh chefs, bartenders, artists and musicians will help kick-off the Lawrenceville bar's Vault 3.0 with a benefit for its rooftop garden project.

Comments

Southern Cuisine Served with a Big Side of Hospitality

Southern Cuisine Served with a Big Side of Hospitality

Sugar and Smoke owner Andrea Robinson not only wants to feed customers of her new eatery in Bloomfield –– she wants to know their names.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
The 5 Best Places to Shop If You Have a Green Thumb

The 5 Best Places to Shop If You Have a Green Thumb

Hone your gardening skills at these top Pittsburgh-area nurseries, garden centers and shops.

Comments

The 5 Best Movie Theaters in Pittsburgh

The 5 Best Movie Theaters in Pittsburgh

A movie-going experience is about more than just the movie. PM Film Critic Sean Collier takes a break from movie reviews and shares the best spots for cocktails, classics and comfort.

Comments


House of 1000 Beers Is Not Exaggerating

House of 1000 Beers Is Not Exaggerating

There are actually more than 1,000 different varieties of beer available at the pleasant Warrendale bar and restaurant.

Comments

Phantom Fright Nights is Creepy, Essential Kennywood

Phantom Fright Nights is Creepy, Essential Kennywood

The Halloween attraction turns the playful park sinister in delightful ways.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Sandwich, Helmet, Teammates Await Bell’s Return to Steelers

Sandwich, Helmet, Teammates Await Bell’s Return to Steelers

Le’Veon Bell reportedly intends to return to the Steelers before the second Browns game on Oct. 28, but hasn’t yet. But that didn’t stop some of his teammates from trying to have some fun with Bell at the media’s expense.

Comments

Shazier, Steelers Return to Cincinnati Still Seeking a Happy Ending

Shazier, Steelers Return to Cincinnati Still Seeking a Happy Ending

Sunday's return to Paul Brown Stadium will be the Steelers' first trip back since last December when linebacker Ryan Shazier went down and stayed down. But this time he’ll be back on the sideline with his team, and most significantly he’ll be back on his feet.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
The 400-Word Review: The Old Man and the Gun

The 400-Word Review: The Old Man and the Gun

Robert Redford's alleged final performance is a quiet, fitting farewell.

Comments

The 400-Word Review: Halloween

The 400-Word Review: Halloween

Forty years later, a new "Halloween" resets most of the franchise and returns to form.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Pittsburgh Couples with Perfect New York City Proposals

Pittsburgh Couples with Perfect New York City Proposals

Another city of bridges provided the perfect backdrop for these romantic engagements.

Comments

Love and the Law: This Couple's Professor Nailed It

Love and the Law: This Couple's Professor Nailed It

When Julia Conley and Scott Scheinberg's law school professor predicted two people in the class would end up married to one another, they never imagined it would be them.

Comments


Weekly inspiration for your home from the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine
Build or Remodel in 2018? Submit Your Home to Our Best of Design Contest

Build or Remodel in 2018? Submit Your Home to Our Best of Design Contest

Categories include Best New and Best Renovated homes, Best Kitchens and Best Outdoor Space.

Comments

HGTV's Leanne Ford Partners With PPG on Perfect White Paints

HGTV's Leanne Ford Partners With PPG on Perfect White Paints

Known for her signature "white on white" aesthetic, the star of "Restored by the Fords" shares her "fail proof" color choices.

Comments

Edit Module