Transitional picnics. There is something so tranquil and serene about diving into a new season with a very distinctively packed picnic… filled with food, drinks, and cute little treats that highlight everything about transitioning into the absolute best season of the entire year!! It’s not difficult to decide on what to pack for a specified summer picnic, or a full on fall picnic, but it is kind of confusing on what to pack for a picnic in the dead of September considering the weather is still warm, but there is a cool breeze floating around in the air. Since summer isn’t too far gone, we’re not completely in the mood for pumpkin spice everything just quite yet, so I’m going to guide all of you Diamonds on making the most perfect transitional picnic to date! This IS the 101!
I love a picnic so much! I think it’s the cutest little date idea whether it’s with a significant other, a friend, or even just a mother daughter day in the middle in the living room floor while watching a chick flick! There’s seriously so many ways you could go about putting this basket together, and endless options of where to enjoy it, but you always have to have the essentials!
The transitional picnic packing essentials: (or any picnic for that matter!)
- I always base everything that I put in the basket around what type of sandwich, finger sandwich, or hoagie I’m putting together. I definitely think that sandwiches are a picnic stable in my book!
- Cheese is the next essential! I think cheese, cured meats, and crackers are always more than welcome in your picnic basket.. along with any other charcuterie board fill-ins.
- Fruit to represent the seasons, or transitioning into one! You can also do add whatever vegetables that you’re into as well besides the fruit! Picking on fruits & vegetables when dining during a picnic is the most traditional thing to do! Since we are heading into autumn which is the peak of apple and pear season, I had to include both of those babies! Besides grapes they really are my two favorite fruits to eat on a picnic anyway.
- Little goodies and treats to snack on makes a picnic basket super special. The snacks I chose for picking in this transitional picnic basket are plain sea salted kettle cooked chips because I feel like you can’t fully enjoy a sandwich without yummy chips to accompany it. Then I placed in some sesame sticks to pair along with the smoked gouda cheese that I have cubed up to enjoy since they both just goes amazingly together, and I laid those all next to crunchy banana chips for a delicious bite of pure, natural sweetness!
- I feel like all picnics NEED to have that touch of sweetness.. whether it’s sophisticated sweetness, a touch of romance, or a just simple indulgence. Being that I did put this picnic together for my boyfriend and I added added a box of whiskey filled chocolate truffles. His liquor of choice will forever be whiskey, so he was pretty pleased with these when he saw that I threw them in there as his little surprise!
- Wrapped Candy! (To sort of throw is a “confetti” or decor) 😉 It doesn’t necessarily have to be huge candy bars unless you would want it to be, but I tossed in some wrapped up pumpkin spice chewy caramels to introduce the new season that we are vastly approaching. If you aren’t really into caramel, you can throw in taffy, or even hard candy would be a tasteful touch! Lollipops are definitely a nice go to as well, and if you pack champagne with gorgeous glassware you could even drop your lollipop into the glass to have it’s delicious candy flavors infuse into your champagne as you take sips! YUM!
- Wine! Even if you don’t enjoy wine.. pack yourself some coolers, a hard cider, or something to relax to while you enjoy a perfect transitional picnic with your loved one(s)! If by chance you do not drink alcohol there are plenty of cute drinks to pack other than that! Cans of flavored sodas, sparkling waters, or lip licking lemonade! Whatever you choose is just to wet the whistle while you lay back, and take in some relaxation for just a little bit at least!
For the sandwiches I didn’t just want to do lunchmeat, and cheese because I felt like that did not give me the smokiness that I wanted to showcase for this transitional period. I had a ham steak that I’ve been dying to do something awesome with, and the thought of ham salad for this picnic planning was ideal ! All you have to do is small dice one whole ham steak, and place all of it in a stainless steal mixing bowl. Then in the bowl you’re ready for the mayonnaise, and sweet pickle relish! If you don’t really like relish please please do not skip over it!! I am begging you. Lol. How it tastes on a hotdog is not how it is going to taste in this dish. Ham salad actually wouldn’t even taste like ham salad if you skipped out on the relish, so make sure you add three tablespoons of relish, along with a half cup of good hearty mayonnaise. The only other thing you have left to do is sprinkle in a punch of flavor by adding salt, pepper, dried parsley, paprika for some more smokiness, and a dash of garlic powder.
When putting the sandwiches together as one with the delectable ham salad you must pick the bread carefully! The bread of a sandwich can truly make or break it! I have mentioned that to you Diamonds before in pervious posts! I chose pillowy potato buns that were a bit small, so that we can each enjoy two of these sandwiches! When creating a sandwich for a picnic when I already have cheese cubes packed, I usually decide to not add cheese on the sandwich itself. Instead of the cheese, for presentation and texture.. I placed some green leaf lettuce piles on the bottom of each bun. Then of course I put two spoonfuls of the ham salad on each one of the sandwiches. If you used a whole ham steak there will be left overs, but if you do not want leftovers you can simply use a half of one, but I mean who wouldn’t want to nibble on some the next day with crackers, or bread cubes? DUH! That’s a no brainer! 😉
For some ornate decorative presentation when you open the basket to see whats inside.. you can wrap your sandwiches in parchment paper by folding each corner into the center to hold everything in, and then fastening It with some burlap string; tying it all into a bow!
Picnic planning is a very pretty piece of art, especially when planning for a transitional one because you want to add pops of seasonal aspects, without adding too much when it hasn’t even official started yet. The best way to go about it is just switching out your summer berries, to juicy fall fresh apples, switching out certain meats and cheeses for ones that add more smokiness into the spread since smokey foods remind me of a fair, or having a bonfire, and then switching out some s’more desserts to strong liquor filled chocolates, or maybe even pecan filled shortbread cookies! It is just all about connecting little fall features into a traditional picnic to make it a transitional one, so you can start to enjoy some of the best fall flavors that there is to be offered! I could have packed some thirst quenching cider to pair with the fruit even better than the berry filled wine that I added in, BUT I thought that that would be much more of a complete fall filled basket rather than celebrating the transition between the seasons! Of course you can make it less, or more autumn filled if you would like, but this is everything that I feel that makes it just perfectly perfect!
HAVE SO MUCH FUN TRANSITIONAL PICNIC PLANNING DIAMONDS!