As the weather gets warmer, I find that we spend more time outside, doing a variety of activities which naturally include eating (and sometimes walking or gardening). Just being outside is great for your health, with many possible health benefits, which can relieve stress, reduce blood pressure and lower your heart rate. Other benefits of being outdoors in the sunshine, is it is great for vitamin D.
Eating outdoors could just be getting out of the office for a light lunch to clear your head and leaving you more focused. It could also be a huge gathering of friends and family for a bbq, which is a great way to relax and socialise. Both are great to make you just feel good.
The question is, what is the best food for the great outdoors? I can not decide, as I do like my food. I do like my one pot surprises, when you chuck everything into one pot and leave it in the oven. This frees up time to do other activities that are enjoyable, for example catching up with friend (or in my case crafting & watching movies!). One of my favourite one pot wonders is a simple chili con carne. It’s no fuss and only needs a fork to eat. Also can be accompanied by an assortment of side dishes.
I also like how bbq’s can be so relaxed, just putting burgers or sausages on and doing nothing but waiting for them to cook. I feel that it’s great because you can put on as much food as you need and reducing the amount of waste food……but who actually does that because we do like to feed our family and friends, right? I also do like leftovers, as you can create a whole different meal but with the same items (have I mentioned that I like my food?!).
Now picnics can be so adaptable, for me it’s like a posh afternoon tea but for the outdoors. Picnics can be filled with sweet treats and savoury delights, made child friendly, adapted for picky eaters, romantic for couples or made posh for the sophisticated diners.
Could the ultimate outdoor food be Fish & Chips at the seaside, while sitting on the beach, followed by proper seaside ice cream? What is it about eating at eating at the seaside? Is it the salt in the sea breeze or you get covered in sand? It certainly all adds to the experience!
Places to picnic/eat outdoors in Longford
The Mall in Longford Town is a great space for walking around and for a picnic. There is parking. a path running along the river edge and then around the park), picnic tables and plenty of space to throw down a blanket.
Ballinamuck Bog Walk is a fabulous place to have a walk, to walk up an appetite and to sit at either at benches or throw down rugs along side a bumbling stream, with views of the bog and a wooded area.
Lough Key has a fabulous has a cafe to get hot and cold food, that you can eat indoors…..but you could eat it outside decking area. The park is ENORMOUS, with picnic tables at the waters edge or there are plenty of areas to throw down a blanket (depending how far you would like to carry to your food).
There are so many more places to go outside and eat but sometimes we just to lounge around the garden at Bramblewick House. We have picnic tables and plenty of space to throw down that good old reliable rug. No need to worry about about driving and parking because you are already here! You can also have hot or cold food that you have created (or purchased from the local shops).
Are there any outdoor food scenarios that I’ve missed? What is your favourite? I think all this talk about food has made me hungry, I’m off to raid the cupboards…..