A DIY Wedding Picnic

Photographer: August Selckmann

Anyone can create this simple meal, and with some planning for interesting ways to display the dishes, you will surely impress your guests. Simple, fresh and fun food that is easy to assemble just needs a fun way to be presented.
• Kabobs • Chimichurri • Tuscan Chicken Sliders • Pesto • Pico de Gallo • Jicama Slaw • Taco Cones • Chopped Salad • Donut Holes •

Canards Catering and Event Production; canardscatering.com; 240-434-3602
We thank our friends at Canards Catering and Event Production for sharing this menu with our readers.



Simply Roasted Veggies

This is a really simple and interesting option for a nice picnic or stations party. Pair skewer combinations with delicious sauces and display them individually for an abundant upscale presentation. These boats are great for individual skewer displays.

• Grilled Chorizo sausage

• Sliced peppers

• Zucchini

• Tomatoes

• Onion

• Grill ingredients on a skewer at the last minute and top with chimichurri.

• For this event, we grilled chorizo sausage, peppers, zucchini, tomatoes and onion separately and skewered at the last minute. We topped with chimichurri (see recipe).


*If using bamboo skewers (as opposed to a metal or other alternative) make sure to soak them in cold water for at least 30 minutes before skewering/grilling.
*Most people like to put a little bit of everything on every skewer, but I like to skewer items together that generally cook in roughly the same time frame for more control. For example, squash and zucchini together, peppers and onions together, and tomatoes have to fly solo or most of them will be in the bottom of your grill. You can re-skewer for serving.


Kabobs topped with Chimichurri


• 1/2 cup olive oil

• 2 T red wine vinegar

• ½ cup parsley, finely chopped

• 2 T garlic, minced

• 1 T red Fresno chile, deseeded and finely diced

• 1 T fresh oregano, finely chopped

• 1 T Himalayan pink salt

• ½ tsp ground black pepper


• Process and measure all ingredients.

• Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and allow to sit for 15 minutes or so before using to allow flavors to infuse.

• Refrigerate.


Tuscan Chicken Sliders

Way more fun than full-sized burgers or sandwiches, these minis allow you to enjoy a variety of combinations. The most popular slider is a traditional mini burger.

• Chicken breast

• Olive oil

• Lemon juice


• Toast mini bun. Cut chicken to roughly 3.5-inch diameter pieces and marinate in olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, crushed red pepper, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Ideally overnight, but at minimum 2 hours.

• Make pesto (see recipe).

• Grill chicken.

• Add a 2.5-inch medallion size piece of mozzarella cheese and bacon to finish on the grill.

• Spread the pesto on the bun and assemble.

We like to mix it up with:
* Crab or salmon cake sliders (tartar or remoulade garnished with a simple corn salad).
* French dip sliders (thinly shaved prime rib or roast beef, caramelized onions and provolone cheese).
* Portobello sliders (grilled portobello, red pepper, onion, tomato, salt and pepper).

• 2 cup basil leaves, stems removed
• 2 EA garlic cloves
• 4 ounces walnuts
• 4 ounces olive oil
• 2 ounces lemon juice


• Process and measure all ingredients.

• In a food processor, pulse the walnuts and garlic cloves until fine.

• Add all remaining ingredients and process until desired consistency.

• Refrigerate or serve immediately.


Chopped Salad

I love these cups! They are great for standing or stations receptions where it is hard to include salad. Just make sure everything is cut into bite sized pieces! If you want to really get creative, you can put a variety of dressings in pipettes.

• Tomatoes

• Cucumbers

• Red onion

• Avocado

• Lime Juice


• Chop tomatoes, cucumber and red onion in small even pieces.

• Core and peel and slice avocado, dip in lime juice until service.

Get creative with the salad toppings. Pasta salad works well in these cups too! The salad can be prepped the day before; assemble just before service.


Tacos in Boats

These are super fun, easy to eat and look adorable. The cone keeps it all together for display, but also makes the tacos easy to fill if you are doing a lot. All of the toppings can be prepared ahead of time so assembly and service is not overwhelming.
I used these cones. You can purchase a stand for them or you can fill a decorated box or bowl with dried black beans to keep them standing up. Be creative- this should tie into your overall theme and décor.

• 8-inch flour and corn tortillas

• Braised chicken

• 1 lime

• Fresh cilantro

Use 8- inch flour or corn tortillas (good idea to offer both for those who eat gluten free) and cut them in half. Make a cone with the half tortilla and slip in the pinewood cone. From there, just fill the cones garnish and display. Garnish with thinly sliced lime and cilantro.

Best to grill or braise the protein. Lightly toast the tortilla on a dry flat skillet before putting it in the cone for best flavor and texture. Don’t over toast or it will be too hard to mold.

Some other fun combinations we like to serve:
* Pulled Pork with Pineapple Slaw

* Braised Beef with Chimichurri

* Sweet Potato and Black Bean with Avocado Crema

* Portobella with Spinach and Artichoke garnished with Thyme

• 2 cups tomato, small dice
• ½ cup onion, small dice
• 1 EA jalepeno, seeded and small dice
• 2 T cilantro, finely chopped
• Juice of 1 lemon
• 1/2 tsp Himalayan pink salt
• 1 T ground black pepper

Process and measure all ingredients. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Refrigerate or serve immediately.

Braised Chicken with Jicama Slaw


• 1 green cabbage, shaved
• 1 Jicama, matchstick
• 1 red onion, shaved
• 8 breakfast radish, shaved
• ½ cup cilantro, finely chopped

Process and measure all ingredients. Gently toss all ingredients in a mixing bowl. Refrigerate or serve immediately.

Donut Holes

• 2 cups all-purpose flour
• 1/4 cup granulated sugar
• 1.5 T baking powder
• 1/2 tsp kosher salt
• 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
• 1 large egg
• 1 cup whole milk
• 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
• 1/4 cup melted butter
• Vegetable oil for frying


• Line a baking sheet with paper towels and set aside.

• Pour 2 inches of oil into heavy bottomed pan. Heat until 350.
•  Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and nutmeg in large mixing bowl.
•  In a separate bowl, whisk together milk, egg vanilla. Whisk together wet and dry ingredients.

•  Add melted butter and stir until mixture forms a thick batter.

• Use a cookie scoop to scoop up the batter and drop (carefully!) into hot oil.

• Fry for about 2 minutes per side. Remove and cool on paper towels.

* For sugared donuts: Dust with granulated sugar.
* For chocolate covered donuts: Let cool completely and dip in warm chocolate ganache (1/2 semi-sweet chocolate melted with 1/4 cup heavy cream).