The author of this post in the Guardian’s Word of Mouth food blog posits that picnics are a disappointment.
I’m afraid I had to disagree, not to mention provide a comparison to the Indian take on eating outdoors. Here’s what I posted as a comment to that article:
“Ha! If you think the Brits have odd ideas about eating outside you should try an Indian-style picnic. Born here to parents who emigrated from India I’ve experienced many of these strange outdoor meals, both in India and here in the UK.
The problem boils down to the fact that Indians haven’t quite cottoned on to the idea of making different dishes for picnics to those they make and eat for regular hot meals indoors. This results in a desperate attempt to keep various curries and freshly cooked breads warm at the same time as keeping cold drinks cold. Of course, that never quite works. And, although Indian Indians are adept at eating such dishes with their fingers, I (and most non-Indian Brits too) just can’t master it!
But a good old British picnic? Bring it on! Whether it’s a supermarket dash of sarnies, sausage rolls, crisps and cakes or a more elegant, home-cooked affair with home-made pies, quiches and scotch eggs, wonderful salads (take the dressing in a separate container and there are no soggy salads to be seen), freshly-baked cakes and fresh fruit for dessert, I’m happy!
Of course, there are always the downsides of ants, wasps, rain and dog poo to contend with but a bit of careful planning in terms of location and weather forecasts should help avoid those!
Now, if the summer ever comes back, where did I put my picnic hamper and coolboxes?”