Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Canada Day Eats Part 3 - Planning Ahead

 So you're planning a back yard BBQ to celebrate Canada's 145th birthday, eh? It's not enough to just plan a menu, or tell people what to bring. We must consider the outdoor elements and plan accordingly. We generally want our guests to be well looked after and have a relaxing time...that's not too much to ask, is it?  My mind starts going on overdrive when I know people are coming to spend the day and most of the evening in my back yard. The are so many darn things to consider.

Some things to think about when planning a back yard gathering:

-Check the weather!!! Is there the threat of having to move indoors and if so, is there room for everyone?

-Perhaps some tents or gazebo type of shelter would be helpful. Even umbrellas are helpful. (check with people you have invivted, perhaps someone has a portable gazebo)

-Seating.  Where will everyone sit? Do you need to tell them to bring a lawn chair? Some people may like sitting on blankets on the ground.

-Tables. Who has enough tables sitting around for everyone to have room? Perhaps a friend has an extra folding or card table they can bring with them. Or plan food and snacks to be portable or lap friendly. (ie able to eating while sitting with the plate on your lap)

-Bugs. Need I say more? Provide guests with some protection from mosquitos. Whether it is a couple cans of spray, citronella candles, those little coils, or whatever you use that helps keep the little critters at bay.

-Lighting. If you will be in the yard past sundown, you will need some lighting so people can see each other.  if your lighting is by way of bonfire, make to check local bylaws about bonfires first.  Other lighting can come from setting up your christmas lights along the fence, candles in jars, or even the funky Tiki torches.

-The menu. When thinking about the menu, keep in mind ease of eating and mingling.  Generally backyard parties aren't sit down formal things but wander around and mingle types of gatherings.

-Music. Don't allow your teen to play his crappy metal music. Play a nice set list of various music....perhaps an all Canadian musician play list would be nice here....

- Keeping things chilled.  Not only the astmosphere, but the food needs to be kept at proper temperatures to keep everyone safe.  Drinks can be tossed into a cooler or a bucket of ice but try placing bowls or platters of food on a bed of ice.  You can easily find large trays to mound ice in and then nestle the serving bowls into.  Keep the replenishing the ice as necessary

-Oh! Check the gas on your BBQ!! I actually ran out the other night and Hubby had to make the propane run for me while getting things grilled for my other posts....oops. Have a back up plan or an extra tank, or fill up your tank.

I have probably missed some things but feel free to let me know, just be nice about it.

A quick note about today's CSA haul.  This week our CSA has provided us with:

Mixed greens with flowers

 Salad turnips and beets

 Garlic scapes, green onions, cilantro, and a bunch of lovely herbs!

So excited to get these into lunches this week!

Until next time, stay warm (with the AC on) and eat well!


  1. I'm so jealous of your CSA. Next year for sure!

    1. I think we were lucky to get in this year. The key is to start shopping early. I can't wait until the big stuff starts coming in!!


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