Meatless Monday – Happy New Brunswick Day!

I’ve never really taken to al fresco dining: the unappetizing feeling of sun beating down on your skin, the flies in your food and that sudden wind that threatens to make your meal a take-away (and not in the good sense). But here I am in New Brunswick and all I want to do is eat outside.

New Brunswick is one of Canada’s ten provinces and is now in the throes of some hot and humid temperatures. I have been eating my meals outside in a bit of shade with only a light breeze and so far, I’ve managed to keep the bugs at bay.

The first Monday in August is New Brunswick Day. Here’s what I had for breakfast:

More on this later…

Whether it’s a picnic or patio there are certain kinds of food that are light, healthy and refreshing for eating al fresco in the summer. This Meatless Monday list is by no means exhaustive but it’s a start.

Foods for hydration
Keeping up your fluid intake is important, especially when you’ve been sweating a lot. Popsicles melt too quickly before you can appreciate them, fruit juice is high in sugar and water is just, well, boring.  Cucumber and watermelon are both high in water and can be added to salad in various combinations. Try a cucumber sandwich or watermelon mint lemonade. Mint is also cooling.

Apparently August 3rd is National Watermelon Day!
Check out this post by John-Bryan Hopkins on Foodimentary

Wraps are great ways to eat a compact meal that won’t spill all over the place and attract critters at your feet. Try a light spread of hummus with some sweet bell pepper, carrots, tomatoes and salad greens stuffed into a whole grain soft tortilla shell. The thinness of the tortilla is a lighter version of sandwich carbs for the summer.

Take a dip
A thick dip such as baba ghanouj is ideal for transporting to the picnic table. Eat with crackers or water-laden vegetables for a light snack.

The added bonus of vegetarian/vegan friendly foods is they often do not have the same strict criteria for handling as dairy, eggs and meat do. But still, you should practice food-safe procedures for preparing and storing food at hot temperatures.

Any other ideas you’d like to share?

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