With summer in full-swing and the curtain raised on our recent $1.3 million renovation to Traditions of Braselton’s already stellar amenity package – including Junior Olympic-sized pool with waterslide, clubhouse with event area and workout facility, and lighted tennis court pavilion – it’s time to pack a cooler, blow the dust off your picnic basket and head down to the pool! For some fresh, fun and healthy ideas on what to pack, we’ve compiled the following suggestions from the experts at Food Network® and Parents® Magazine:
- Although a bag of chips is easy to pack, you might want to take advantage of seasonal fruits and veggies to offer healthier snacks for your family. A bag of chilled red seedless grapes is always a crowd-pleaser and Food Network suggests Feta Stuffed Cherry Tomatoes as another good-for-you alternative. Carrots, celery and low-fat ranch dressing or fresh cut strawberries and yogurt make a terrific alternative to chips and dip, too! For little ones and resident picky eaters, Parents Magazine recommends Melon Swizzlers – colorful bite-sized pieces of cantaloupe, honeydew and watermelon cut with a melon baller and “kabobbed” on a straw.
- When pulling together a potato or pasta salad to go with your picnic menu, consider making the switch to homemade pesto sauce in place of mayonnaise (which doesn’t always set well in the sun or on the waistline). Check out this recipe for Pesto Potato Salad from chef and nutritionist Ellie Krieger for a little inspiration. You could always swap out the red-skinned potatoes for low-carb pasta. Prefer veggies over potatoes and pastas in your salads? Try the Confetti Corn recipe from Food Network’s Barefoot Contessa, Ina Garten.
- For your main course, plan ahead! Marinate and grill up some pork tenderloin or chicken breasts, then slice and chill to enjoy the following day – tucked inside a pita, tortilla or soft roll. Food Network recommends Grilled Pork Tenderloin a la Rodriguez – a recipe from Chef Bobby Flay. Steamed, peeled and chilled shrimp is another awesome poolside entrée. Taste of Home offers up an AWESOME Simple Marinated Shrimp recipe you might want to try. For pint-sized picnickers, consider making sandwiches ahead of time – featuring their favorite fillings like turkey and cheese or Nutella. Cut them with a cookie cutter and wrap them in wax paper to chill overnight (the wax paper keeps them from drying out) or make them just before you head to the pool. Parents Magazine recommends using floral-shaped cookie cutters for their Sandwich Bouquet recipe.
- For dessert, try to go handheld to minimize the need for additional plates. Rice Krispy Treats are always a hit, but you might want to consider Genius Kitchen’s recipes for Cheesecake Strawberries (submitted by miraclelove77), Quick Berry Tartlets made with sugar-free pudding (submitted by mariposa13) or No Bake Chocolate, Peanut Butter and Corn Flakes Bars (submitted by Marg CaymanDesigns).
- Thirsty? Bottled water is always your best bet when spending time in the hot summer sun, but Food Network offers up a ton of libation inspiration when it comes to Summer Drinks and Cocktails, like the Bottle of Rum Pirate Punch recipe. Don’t forget – alcohol can impair your ability to swim, so please drink responsibly.
- Don’t feel like cooking? The Golf Club Grille offers take-out for lunch (every day except Tuesdays) and on Wednesdays and Fridays for dinner. You can even order breakfast on Saturdays and Sundays starting at 8 a.m. To place your order, simply call the Club at 706.363.9963 and press 3 to reach a bartender who will take your order, which will be available for pick up at the main bar at the Club.
Best wishes for a great summer! Enjoy!