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Summer barbecue, garden party or picnic?

Sunshine 031

I’ve read a lot about garden parties and barbecues just lately. We haven’t exactly had the weather for them in England, but there are breaks in the rain sometimes. I’m told that delicate little cucumber sandwiches are served at Royal garden parties and so it doesn’t have to cost a fortune.  I would prefer a bit more salad on the sandwiches and maybe a bit of pink salmon. I had a iceberg lettuce for 39p and a tin of pink salmon is only about 99p, so if you get some cheap bread, it doesn’t have to be too expensive to do salad sandwiches. Those are ideal for a picnic or a garden party. A barbecue might be a little more expensive.

Barbecues are usually more adult affairs in the evening so people expect some drinks of the alcoholic kind! You can get some ‘value’ sausages and bread rolls from Aldi, both are in packs of a dozen. Some supermarkets do the bread rolls in a pack of 12 and the sausages in a pack of 8. If you are likely have bread rolls left over, put spread on them and put them with the salad. Aldi has cheap booze too, try to have a selection, you might like cheap lager, but your guests might be wine drinkers or even like proper English beer. You can please most people by making a punch. You can make it with cheap cider and fruit. Keep them away from the hot barbecue if you are making the punch a bit lethal by mixing a lot of ingredients.  A drop of vodka in the punch will work wonders, but your guests might not realise how potent it is.   Make the base of the punch cider and lemonade and it’ll be cheap, non-lethal and your guests will still be able to walk at the end of the night. Even the drivers will be able to sample it.

I bought chicken that was close to its sell by date last night at Aldi and it was 30% off. So two chicken legs were only 70p. You can cut these in half and barbecue them and you have 4 pieces of chicken for 70p. You can sprinkle it with spices too, I like 5 spice. You can get plastic baskets in Aldi and I think they have them in Poundland too. Bread tends to be the staple food at barbecues, but you can put loads of oven chips in the oven, then serve up chips and a piece of chicken to your guests in a ‘basket’. Get the chicken cheap and you can afford to be generous. I have had chicken drumsticks for around £2 a kilo from Lidl and Aldi too. They are great for a barbecue or cold for a picnic or garden party. A drumstick and chips costs less than 50p a person. It’s even cheaper if you can get chicken wings cheap. Some butchers sell these ready spiced for barbecues and they are often at a good price. Be careful of ready spiced in the supermarkets though, I saw one supermarket charging £16 a kilo!

Some people like steaks on a barbecue, but I think that might be expensive if you have  a lot of guests. Beef burgers are a cheap alternative, but still quite high in fat. A pot of onions to go with them will make them seem more and add to the flavour. Ketchup too will be useful if you are doing hot dogs.

You can have some fun days out while the kids are off school, if you turn lunch into a picnic at a beauty spot or nature reserve. Take salad sandwiches with a little salmon on or salad sandwiches and a chicken drumstick each. Orange squash is OK to drink or cheap soft drinks for Lidl or Aldi. Aldi had Dandelion and Burdock (49p) and Ice Cream soda last night. You should be able to do a picnic for less than £1 per person. Use a cool bag for the food.

You might like yesterday’s blog, Thrifty Thursday | Shop Smart. There are also more great ideas on a Zillion Ideas. Why not pop over there and check them out?


3 responses

  1. Pingback: The weeks review « Mike10613's Blog

  2. Pingback: Frugal summer update « Mike10613's Blog

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