Summer Picnic Recipes

Summertime and the living is … al fresco! Outdoor gatherings are a highlight of the season—and they’re almost always accompanied by good food. We’ve got some great summer recipes and food pairings to try at your next picnic or barbecue. Each is made using fair trade ingredients, so you can feel extra good about preparing and sharing with family and friends.

 Olive oil with Za'atar Mix makes an herbal bread dip. Photo: Sindyanna of Galilee.

Olive oil with Za'atar Mix makes an herbal bread dip. Photo: Sindyanna of Galilee.

Looking for a quick appetizer, sandwich, or salad idea? Check out the pairings at the end for some simple summer favorites. Bon appétit!  

 A traditional eastern Mediterranean spice blend, Za'atar is the star of this summer salad.  

A traditional eastern Mediterranean spice blend, Za'atar is the star of this summer salad.  

Couscous Salad

From Sindyanna of Galilee, Israel

Ingredients:

Pour couscous in a large bowl and cover with 1 1/2 cups hot water. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Toss the couscous with scallions, tomatoes, cucumber, Za'atar, lemon juice, oil, salt, pepper, and feta, if using. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate.

 10 Bean Soup Mix adds variety to traditional baked beans. Photo: Women's Bean Project.

10 Bean Soup Mix adds variety to traditional baked beans. Photo: Women's Bean Project.

Calico Baked Beans

From Women’s Bean Project, USA

Ingredients:

  • 2 packages of Women's Bean Project 10 Bean Soup (beans only - save the mix for another cooking occasion)

  • 1 quart pork and beans or leftover baked beans

  • 6 slices of bacon, diced, OR 1 cup ham bits OR ½ lb. sausage or ground beef

  • ½ cup onion, diced

  • 3/4 cup brown sugar

  • 2 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp dry mustard

  • 1 clove minced garlic

  • ½ cup vinegar

  • ½ cup ketchup

Preheat oven to 325°. Soak and cook beans in microwave according to directions on package.. Place in large casserole, reserving liquids. Fry bacon (could also use ham bits, sausage or ground beef), pour off excess fat. Add onions (fry briefly), brown sugar, salt, dry mustard, garlic, vinegar, ketchup. Cook 5 minutes and pour over beans. Add enough reserved bean liquid to barely cover beans. Bake uncovered 1 ½ hours, adding additional liquid if beans become too dry.

 South African Lemon Hot Drops add a savory zing to grilled vegetables.

South African Lemon Hot Drops add a savory zing to grilled vegetables.


Grilled Green Salad

From Turqle Trading, South Africa

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup olive oil

  • 1 Tbsp. Lemon Hot Drops

  • 2 Tbsp. white wine vinegar

  • 1 bunch of asparagus, tough ends of the stalks removed

  • 2 zucchini, sliced in strips lengthwise, about 1/4" thick

  • 1 bunch of broccolini, stalks trimmed

  • 1 bunch green onions, trimmed

  • ⅓ lb. sugar snap peas, ends and strings removed

  • 2 Tbsp. sunflower seeds

  • 1 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds

  • 2 tsp. sesame seeds

Combine olive oil, Lemon Hot Drops, and white wine vinegar. Set aside. Place the vegetables in a glass bowl and coat lightly with olive oil. Grill over medium high heat until lightly charred. Pour olive oil mixture over vegetables while still warm. Remove from grill and sprinkle with sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, and sesame seeds. Serve and enjoy!

 Flavored balsamic vinegar and olive oil add a quick dash of flavor to salads and dips.

Flavored balsamic vinegar and olive oil add a quick dash of flavor to salads and dips.

Want to get outside even faster? Try these pairings for a quick and easy taste sensation, fair trade style.