Inspiration to dine Alfresco this July

Nothing says Summer like dining alfresco! Let us inspire you with some quick and easy mouth-watering recipes that are perfect for eating outdoors.

Fresh and light starter – Tomato & Mozzarella Salad

Ingredients:

5 large tomatoes

1 mozzarella ball

Olive oil

1 clove garlic

Basil

Balsamic glaze

Method:

Slice the tomatoes and the mozzarella and place in a dish. Add the chopped garlic and shredded basil pieces then drizzle olive oil and balsamic glaze and tuck in!

Mouth-watering main – Roast Chicken Garden Salad

Ingredients:

1 large chicken

2 lemons halved

½ a small bunch thyme

Olive oil

1 ciabatta loaf

90g pack prosciutto

1 garlic bulb

200g pack green beans

1 bunch spring onions

Small bunch parsley

4 baby gem lettuces

Method:

Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Season the chicken then stuff with 1 of the lemons and the thyme. Drizzle with olive oil and roast in a tin for 40 mins. Next place the ciabatta pieces and the prosciutto around the chicken then add the garlic and remaining lemon halves. Roast everything together for 40 mins more until the croutons and prosciutto are crisp. Remove from the oven; transfer the chicken to a plate and leave to cool (set aside croutons

and prosciutto). Cook the green beans in a pan of boiling water for 5 mins. Drain, then tip into a big bowl with the spring onions and parsley. For the dressing, stir the garlic and juice from the lemons into the olive oil. Strip the meat off the bones when the chicken has cooled. Add the dressing and mix all ingredients in the bowl before serving. Enjoy!

Delicious dessert – Eton Mess

Quick, easy and tasty! There’s a reason why this dessert is a firm Summer favourite and if you want the simple life then just buy ready-made meringues and skip to the last step!

Ingredients (Serves 4):

500g strawberries

40g caster sugar

350ml double cream

For the meringue

2 medium egg whites

100g caster sugar

Method:

Preheat the oven to 120C/250F/gas ½. Line a baking tray with baking parchment

To make the meringue whisk the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Add sugar and whisk until mixture is thick, glossy and forms stiff peaks. Spoon meringue in small islands and bake in centre of oven for 2 hours. While they’re cooking, put the berries into a large bowl with the 40g sugar, cover and leave to macerate in the fridge. Let the meringues cool completely then break into pieces and mix in with the fruit and whipped cream – delicious!

Other great garden-ready meals that are simple to sort and tasty to enjoy alfresco are: pasta salads (use leftover cooked pasta and toss with oil, tomatoes and feta), omelettes, nachos, and smashed avocado on toast. And if you’re planning a garden gathering then make things easy and try a buffet of crisps and dips, olives, freshly baked baguette slices, quiche, cheeses and meats with a fresh fruit salad to finish.

Now you’ve got your food sorted, enhance your alfresco dining experience with some home comforts to bring the indoors out…

Brighten your garden during those balmy Summer evenings with our fabulous selection of decorative outdoor lighting. You can hang this pack of 20 Dragonfly Solar Lamps in a tree or along a fence – no need for a plug or messy wires – they will come on automatically as the sun goes down, meaning you can enjoy your garden for longer! Or you can carry our Copper Solar Lantern to your outdoor table – it’ll make a stylish centrepiece! This attractive rustic-style lantern contains LED string lights that give off a warm glow. You’ll also love our on-trend Lightbulb Solar String Lights which can hang in trees/large plants or along a fence to add stylish lighting where you need it in your outdoor space.

Add a touch of luxury to your outdoor furniture with our Floral Velvet Cushion Covers. Made in soft, plush velvet they not only give you extra comfort to your cushions, they add an instant splash of colour too with their multi-coloured floral print!

Make the most of the Summer months and enjoy your garden to the full with a spot of alfresco dining this season.

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