Thursday, August 28, 2014

Plan a Labor Day Bike Picnic

"Ross Eurosport and a Batavus" by Jason McDowell is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
Labor Day may be the unofficial end of summer, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make the most of the day off! Your apartment is located close to a lot of fantastic trails and outdoor areas, so why not plan your traditional Labor Day picnic in a scenic spot, and enjoy the exercise and weather on the way there? The Kitchn offers these useful tips for an enjoyable afternoon bike picnic:

Picnic Food Tips
1. Pick sturdy foods. The key to a good bike picnic is bringing packable foods that can survive a bumpy journey. For example, fragile lemon tarts aren't quite as bike-friendly as a dense chocolate cake.

2. Go with variety. As with any outdoor eating menu, I think smaller is better, and having an assortment of small dishes makes the food easier to pack as well as more entertaining to eat.

3. Think versatility. An assortment of good cheese and a loaf of bread will always go far. Throw in some fresh basil and an avocado and you've got yourself the fixings for a lovely picnic sandwich. I also love bring along easy-to-pack things like olive tapenade, as it works well as a spread or as a dip for vegetables.

4. Protect fragile purchases. For picnics that are based off of market foods - think a bunch of fresh fruit and vegetables - just be sure to take a few reusable containers with you to the market. That way, your purchases are easily transportable and won't get crushed and bruised during your journey.

Don't Forget Drinks
You can't have a good picnic without something fun to drink now can you? Beer and wine are easy, just make sure you have an opener with you. If you're in the mood for cocktails, the easiest is to prepare a mixer at home, which you can bring along in a bottle and finish making your drinks on site.

For colder weather rides and meals, invest in a good thermos. That way, you can fill it with whatever you like: coffee, hot chocolate, or maybe even apple cider with a little bourbon?

Essential Bike Picnic Tools
The first essential thing to remember about a picnic à vélo is that you want to be packing things that are unbreakable. That means investing in good utensils and dishes that are lightweight and reusable but won't get crushed when you pack them.

My personal cycle picnic pack includes:
  • Swiss Army knife
  • reusable cups
  • reusable silverware
  • something to eat out of
  • tea towel for use as a small tablecloth
  • lightweight wooden cheeseboard, perfect for serving and cutting on
  • if room allows, a blanket or sheet is always a worthwhile item to bring along
Bicycle picnics are the perfect blend of exercise, fresh air, relaxation, and simple but good food. These tips will make planning and packing for your next picnic ride a snap!


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