Thursday, June 21, 2018
Features and More

Three good beach picnic ideas

Need to get out of your workaday rut? Make the short drive west to the Gulf of Mexico and let a dramatic sunset wash away whatever worries have cropped up.

Now that the days are longer, an evening picnic is a lovely way to remind yourself you live in a pretty fabulous place. Sure, the summers are stickier than an airport Cinnabon, but look at the picnic basket as half full, rather than half empty. Rejoice in April and May, the last low-humidity months until, well, maybe December.

Food-wise, the biggest concern with packing a picnic is keeping eats safe. Picnic food often sits for long periods without conventional refrigeration, so it is imperative to devise a menu that can withstand the elements. Ice chests and other thermal containers help, but some foods, like those with mayonnaise, are breeding grounds for bacteria.

Beware of aggressive seabirds that love to swoop down on unattended food. Cover food if you get up to swim, hunt shells or throw the Frisbee. Do not feed the birds; that only makes it worse for you and the next group that comes along.

Make a list of nonfood essentials: blanket or towels; plates and napkins; utensils for eating and serving; cups for drinks; paper towels or wipes for sticky hands; garbage bags and bug repellent. Nonessentials but nice might include a flashlight if you plan to stay after dark, beach toys for the kids, shell or bird identification guides and a Swiss Army knife.

Here are three sunset picnic menus.

No-cook finger food

Chilled red grapes

Olives and pickled veggies

Gouda and white cheddar

Hard salami

Baguette

Biscotti

Iced tea

Take-out picnic

Rotisserie chicken

Cut-up fruit

Pasta salad

Corn muffins

Assorted cookies

Cranberry juice and seltzer spritzers

For kids of all ages

Watermelon wedges

Mexican Calzones with salsa

Carrot and celery sticks with ranch dressing

Chocolate Chunk Blondies

Lemonade

Information from Times files was used in this report. Janet K. Keeler can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 893-8586.

Comments
Bar review: St. Pete’s Garage is a dive with Pride

Bar review: St. Pete’s Garage is a dive with Pride

Last year’s St. Pete Pride went smoothly, despite some behind-the-scenes drama involving the decision to relocate the parade to the downtown waterfront, rather than the Grand Central District, where it had traditionally been held. After all, the Gran...
Published: 06/21/18
Local craft beer of the week: Beach Slap Piña Colada Wheat Ale from Mad Beach Craft Brewing Company

Local craft beer of the week: Beach Slap Piña Colada Wheat Ale from Mad Beach Craft Brewing Company

"Hooray, it’s summer!" exclaimed no Floridians. But if it’s summer proper and not just the usual year-round weather, you might as well embrace the heat and humidity with a trip to the beach, accompanied by some suitably refreshing beers. While you’r...
Published: 06/21/18
Wine dinners, beer projects and more will wet your whistle this summer

Wine dinners, beer projects and more will wet your whistle this summer

FILIPINO FOOD: WELCOME CHISMISHave you been to the Heights Public Market at the 73,000-square-foot Armature Works yet? It’s the buzzy food market in Tampa Heights with more than a dozen vendors offering up everything from rolled ice cream to Cuban sa...
Published: 06/20/18
On stage this week: Freefall Theatre’s ‘The Musical of Musicals,’ Jay Pharoah

On stage this week: Freefall Theatre’s ‘The Musical of Musicals,’ Jay Pharoah

SENDUP: MUSICAL OF MUSICALSFive composers, a talented cast, choreography by Cheryl Lee and music directed by Michael Raabe — that’s Freefall Theatre’s recipe for a laugh-filled, season-ending summer musical, appropriately titled The Musical of Musica...
Published: 06/20/18
Artists’ talks and Sharon Norwood’s definition of beauty

Artists’ talks and Sharon Norwood’s definition of beauty

MARK MAKING: DEFINING BEAUTYBlack, squiggly lines are at the center of multidisciplinary artist Sharon Norwood’s works, an exhibition of which titled "Defining Beauty" opens at Tempus Projects on Saturday. Norwood’s use of the line in a variety of me...
Published: 06/20/18
Here’s the skinny on the ketogenic diet: What it is, how to follow it properly

Here’s the skinny on the ketogenic diet: What it is, how to follow it properly

It started with jugs of olive oil and cans of tuna, lots of it, which my husband hauled in one day and plunked on the counter. "That’s my lunch!"That was about three months ago, and every day since there has been a new entity in our house to consider...
Published: 06/20/18
Five ideas for rainbow-themed foods to serve at your Pride party

Five ideas for rainbow-themed foods to serve at your Pride party

More than 50,000 people are estimated to attend Pride weekend in St. Petersburg, which runs Friday to Sunday. (June is LGBTQ Pride Month.) Whether you plan to march in the parade or host your own smaller gathering, we’ve selected five rainbow-themed ...
Published: 06/20/18
My husband has been on the ketogenic diet for three months. Here’s how he does it.

My husband has been on the ketogenic diet for three months. Here’s how he does it.

This week I wrote about something with which I have become very familiar: the ketogenic diet. If you’re like, "Huh?" you are where I was three months ago, before my husband, Phil, embarked on the weight-loss regimen. The keto diet is a high-fat, low-...
Published: 06/19/18
Updated: 06/20/18
Jobsite’s ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ should be more gripping than it is

Jobsite’s ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ should be more gripping than it is

TAMPA — The virtues of Dancing at Lughnasa, with which Jobsite Theater closes its season, are many. This drama by the celebrated Brian Friel opened in 1990 to much acclaim. It captures a family’s joys and sadnesses, and the quickness with which one s...
Published: 06/19/18
A perfect pick for dessert

A perfect pick for dessert

America’s Test KitchenIt might seem impossible to improve on a perfect peach, but we decided to try. We wanted a simple, warm dessert that amplified the peaches’ flavor. To achieve tender, flavorful peaches with a lightly sweet glaze, we began by tos...
Published: 06/19/18