Pack your pic­nic bas­ket with easy, healthy food

Central and North Burnett Times - - LIFESTYLE - MELISSA MEIER

RE­STRIC­TIONS on out­door gath­er­ings are fi­nally eas­ing – and if you’re any­thing like me, you’re prob­a­bly crav­ing a sea­side bask in the sun­shine with good food and good com­pany.

Af­ter so long in iso­la­tion, how­ever, you mightn’t be feel­ing like the typ­i­cal cheese and cured meat fest that most pic­nics in­volve. Be­hold: seven healthy and easy pic­nic foods for your much-an­tic­i­pated catch up with your pals.

1. Cap­rese salad skew­ers Thread baby boc­concini balls, cherry toma­toes and fresh basil on to a skewer – it’s as easy as one, two, three. These tasty lit­tle morsels are a lighter take on cheese, and even con­tain those all-im­por­tant veg. Buon ap­petito! 2. Mini frit­tatas

Roast up a batch of ve­g­ies (think: pumpkin, asparagus, cap­sicum), throw them into a dozen whisked eggs, pour the mix­ture into muf­fin cases and bake for a sat­is­fy­ing, pro­tein­packed bite to eat.

3. Fruit salad

For a hit of nat­u­ral sweet­ness, any­thing and ev­ery­thing that’s in sea­son will do. With fresh fruit, you’re in for a boost of dis­ease-fight­ing an­tiox­i­dants, gut-lov­ing fi­bre and vi­ta­min C to sup­port your im­mune sys­tem.

4. Home­made hum­mus This one takes a bit of ex­tra ef­fort, but trust me, it’s worth it. Add rinsed tinned chick­peas, tahini, gar­lic, lemon juice and good qual­ity ex­tra vir­gin olive oil to a food pro­ces­sor and blitz un­til smooth and creamy. Del­ish. 5. Yoghurt flat­breads

To go with your hum­mus (or any other healthy dip for that mat­ter), a yoghurt flat­bread is a nice touch. Sim­ply com­bine plain Greek yoghurt with whole­meal sel­f­rais­ing flour and cook batches on a grid­dle pan to get some lovely char marks. It’s much more sat­is­fy­ing than high-GI crack­ers from a packet.

6. Devilled eggs

They might be from the ’70s, but in my eyes, devilled eggs are the bomb. Sim­ply hard-boil a batch of eggs then gen­tly peel and halve them, scoop­ing out the yolk. Com­bine the yolk with a lit­tle mus­tard, mayo and pa­prika, and spoon the mix­ture back into the yolk cav­ity.

7. Dark choco­late dipped straw­ber­ries

Be­cause what pic­nic is com­plete with­out a lit­tle treat for dessert? I like to use dark in­stead of milk choco­late be­cause a lit­tle goes a long way (read: you’re prob­a­bly not go­ing to get through the whole block). The higher the per­cent­age of co­coa the bet­ter. bodyand­soul.com.au

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