Summer is here, so BBQs, picnics, and pool parties will be happening every weekend until fall comes around. As there are so few weekends to soak up the sun, we really need to take advantage of it as much as we can. I just got a BBQ last year, so trust me, I’ll be out in the backyard a lot this summer and many more summers to come.
Some people think dining outdoors is hard work, but the PC Insiders Collection for this Summer will take the guesswork out of creating dishes for the table. Unplanned and spontaneous meal can happen on the patio without much planning. My friends and I decided to have a dinner out on the patio as the sun finally made an appearance after a few days of sprinkling rain. I went to my closest Loblaws City Market to pick up a few items to complete the meal.
Check out the behind the scenes of how I make my patio dinner super simple with the help of President’s Choice and their innovative products.
Kick it Up a Notch with Infused Water
A fun idea instead of canned drinks is fruit-infused water or a sangria. It helps cut down on waste and there are a lot of great fruit/veggie combination for the pitchers. My personal favourites are:
- Strawberry + Mint + Lime
- Lemon + Lime + Orange
- Cucumber +Mint +Lime
PC has an Infusion Pitcher where it has a built-in strainer and removable ice tube to make things easier. It adds a very nice touch to have fancy infused waters to bring up you outdoor dining up a notch on a short notice.
You Can Make Friends with Salad
My friends all know I make killer salads and all you really need to do is wash and chop up the ingredients. This particular salad is made with cucumbers, spring mix, PC Axiany Cherry Tomatoes, basil and PC Crumbled Herb & Garlic Goat Cheese. The PC Axiany Cherry Tomatoes were a delight as they were so sweet and flavourful. Choosing ingredients that are in season is key to having fresh and crisp tasting salads. All you need is a drizzle of balsamic to top off the salad.
Having finger food when people arrive is great to get the party started. Fresh fruits like strawberries are always great since it’s in season right now so they are big, juicy and sweet.
Sandwiches are also easy to prepare. I made some quick sandwiches with hummus, cucumbers, and PC Natural Choice Asian Spiced Roast Beef in between whole wheat bread. The roast beef smells amazing as it is made with a blend of star anise, cloves, Chinese cinnamon, black pepper and fennel. Pair that with hummus and it’s a flavour explosion.
Don’t Skimp on the Shrimp
Preparing seafood for the grill can be a bit tricky, but the PC Garlic & Herb Grilling Raw Butterflied Shrimp makes it so easy to prepare. There are at least 12 plump white Pacific shrimp with a garlic and herb seasoning with a zesty hint of lime.
All you need to do is throw them on the grill and that’s it. No cleaning or marinating is needed. It’s all done inside the package. My friends were all very surprised at how delicious they tasted. I’ve never heard so many people said “oh wow” almost at the same time. The char of the grill really accentuated its flavour.
More Than Just Hot Dogs
Up your hot dog game with a few different varieties of smokies from PC. One featured flavour is their Cheddar Jalapeño Smokies. They are all-pork smoked sausages made with real cheddar cheese and jalapeño pieces. Each pack comes with 10 plump and juicy pieces.
A quick grill on each side and the smokies are ready. Whether you eat it in a bun with different condiments or eat them straight up, you’ll love the burst of cheddar cheese as you bite into it. The jalapeño has a little bit of a kick, so it’s nice if you like that.
Convenient Chicken Thighs
PC Hardwood Smoked Chicken Thighs is another product that surprised us when we were BBQing. It comes frozen and fully cooked for convenience, so you just need to throw it on the grill. It is flavoured with a blend of smoke from untreated hardwoods. The dark meat is so succulent. After grilling them with the added grill lines, these look and taste so damn good.
Don’t Forget Dessert
Dessert is a must and it’s a good way to cool down from the hot sun. All you need to do it take them out of the freezer and serve to your friends and family. The hard decision will be choosing which one to have first.
I picked up the PC Superfruit Skyr Bar, which is made with a blend of blackberry, blueberry and dark sweet cherry purées. They are deliciously smooth, creamy and lactose-free. Even if you aren’t lactose intolerant, you’ll love it.
For those wanting to be more indulgent, I also like the PC Rocky Road Ice Cream Bars. It has velvety chocolate ice cream inside with a marshmallow swirl is covered in a milk chocolatey coating with roasted almonds. The best part is that they are mini-sized so you won’t feel guilty eating a whole bar. Just enough ice cream to satisfy that sweet tooth of yours.
That’s just a few ways of making my patio dinner a lot easier and quicker to put together without too much planning. Very little prep work is needed and everyone has a good time especially the host since there is less time running around to gather last minute items or waiting for something else to be done cooking. You can find the PC products mentioned in this article at Loblaw City Market or any stores that carry the PC branded items.
I hope you’re inspired to spend as much time dining outdoors this Summer and create fantastic feasts that will impress your friends, family, and even yourself. Time to get into the Summer state of mind.
This blog post was sponsored by President’s Choice but the opinions are all my own.