A Perfect Day for a Picnic by Tori Finch

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A Perfect Day for a Picnic by Tori Finch

Category: Cookery
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: Wide raning and flavoursome recipes and advice for picnics which will stay in the memory.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 144 Date: March 2013
Publisher: Ryland Peters and Small
ISBN: 978-1849753531

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There are strange reasons why books appeal to you. With A Perfect Day for a Picnic my immediate reaction was it would be lovely to have the weather, never mind the food. Then I had a look at the spine of the book (I know - I'm sad) and it looked just like one of those expensive linen glass cloths - you know, the ones you have to iron and it brought back such memories of childhood picnics that I had to see what was on offer.

It's about organised picnics for family and friends - occasions rather than 'take a sandwich and an apple with you' and it starts of with some sensible planning which you should do to make the event a success, including scouting out the location. Finding a megastore in that delightful spot you remember from a couple of years ago is not going to improve the day. Once the planning is done, it's onto some ideas for specific themes for picnics, starting with a vintage garden party. There's a few ideas for how to set the scene - nothing too extreme - and then some food.

The trademark of this book is simple, colourful, appealing food. A lot of it you can prepare in advance but just occasionally you're going to find yourself doing a bit of assembly immediately prior to serving as with the Ham hock, bean and mint salad with a creamy mustard dressing or the rosewater pavlova at the vintage garden party. As you're probably 'on site' this shouldn't be too much of a problem and there's rather less assembly to be done for, say, the Bike Ride Picnic (and - sensibly - less to take with you) or the Teddy Bears' Picnic.

You get a full range of dishes for each theme but there's good advice about mixing and matching dishes, buying locally and seasonally and ensuring that you have food appropriate to those attending. Remember vegetarians and ensure that they're catered for - and although the days when children had their own food are thankfully gone they might not appreciate more 'fine dining' dishes. It's all common sense, but worth saying as it's easy to forget these things when enthusiasm is in full flow.

There's a theme for just about every occasion from the beach barbeque through to the romantic picnic and the flavours have moved on a long way from the old 'ham sandwich and a jelly' standards. The dishes are wide ranging - with the Indochine Picnic giving a real feel for the Far East and the Provencal Picnic whisking you off to the South of France. It's not just about high summer either - the woodland walk picnic would be fine on an autumn day when you're foraging.

Recipes are in grams and cups and instructions are clear and jargon free. All you need now is the weather!

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

You'll find more picnic food i the book that's still my bible after all these years: Delia Smith's Complete Cookery Course.

Buy A Perfect Day for a Picnic by Tori Finch at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy A Perfect Day for a Picnic by Tori Finch at Amazon.co.uk.

Buy A Perfect Day for a Picnic by Tori Finch at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy A Perfect Day for a Picnic by Tori Finch at Amazon.com.


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