Provender Brown Perth Deli

How To Pack A Perfect Picnic

Is there any better way to eat than outdoors, in the sunshine, with good friends, a large picnic spread, and a chilled bottle of rose wine?

Is there any better way to eat than outdoors, in the sunshine, with good friends and a chilled bottle of rose? Forget Michelin star restaurants and swanky dinner parties, picnics will always win my heart and mind when it comes to food – and if you think about it, they were the original ‘tasting menu’ with Tupperware boxes full of surprise treats, and a five-minute debate on whether flowers have any place in a meal!

Of course, there are many, many different types of picnic; everyone will have a memory of long, lazy, childhood summers full of egg and cheese sandwiches and bags of crips, lashings of fizzy drinks, and box after box of your granny’s wonky fairy cakes.

You may also have enjoyed a romantic picnic over the years, packed up in a beautiful basket with thin slices of charcuterie, carefully selected cheese, and a freshly baked French stick. Champagne and strawberries are essentials here!

The best kind though, is lots of friends, lots of food, and plenty of chatter and laughter. We’ve pulled together some of our favourite picnic ideas to help you plan a perfect day out in the Scottish countryside – there are also some top picnic tips (remember the midge spray!) and a few inspirational recipe links to brighten up your blanket!

Shop for Food and Drink Picnic Treats > 


The Picnic Food – Top Five of Everything

Food and friends sit at the heart of every picnic and you’ll find that in Provender Brown we’ve thought of everything. Quick, easy and oh so delicious our top five of everything will give you a guaranteed picnic hit!
Make sure to take a good selection and pack things up in Tupperware with cool blocks to keep it fresh and tasty.

You’ll find all our suggestions over on our Picnic Food page - this is also a great one to bookmark for Saturday night sofa picnics in front of the telly! – and of course, we’ve other delicious ingredients throughout the store for those of you looking to make your own salads, quiches, pates and sandwiches.

Savoury Picnic Snacks

  • Scotch Eggs in a variety of flavours
  • Mini Quiches both veggie and meat
  • Sausage Rolls – a picnic essential!
  • Pate – for meat lovers, veggies and vegans
  • Crisps galore!

Charcuterie, cold meats and cheeses

  • Pre made grazing platters – a stress free solution
  • Serrano Ham
  • Mini cheeses such as brie, goats cheese
  • Spreading cheeses
  • Smoked meats and fish

See our Charcuterie blog for more inspiration >

Bread and Baked Snacks

  • Wild Hearth Sour Dough Breads
  • Flatbreads
  • Bread Sticks
  • Sour Dough Crackers
  • Oatcakes

Salads and Sides

  • Olives, Balsamic Onions, Sundried Tomatoes
  • Chutneys and relishes
  • Dips, Hummus and Kimchi
  • Gazpacho Soup
  • Herring, anchovies and other tinned fish

Sweet Treats For A Picnic

  • Strawberries and seasonal fruits
  • Chocolate raisins
  • West Country Meringues
  • Loaf Cakes
  • Biscuits and Cookies

Soft Drinks

  • San Pelligrino sparkling drinks
  • Breckland traditional drinks
  • Folkington still juices
  • Flavoured Cordials
  • Still and Sparkling Water

Boozy Drinks

Picnic Inspired Recipes

We love these recipes from our friends at Tracklements. You can buy all of their tasty relishes, sauces and chutneys in the deli, and in the Pantry section online here >

The Non Food Picnic Essentials

If, like me, you get fixated on the food only to realise you’ve forgotten the corkscrew again, then keep our non-food essentials checklist handy for a stress-free picnic where the wine flows all day long.

Top Tip: When your scruffy blanket and plastic cups have seen better days, then do have a look at our fellow Perth Indie, Quince & Cook. They have the most fabulous range of modern and traditional picnic ware including blankets, coolbags, baskets, plates, cups and much, much more. Well worth a look!

A Blanket - Whether it’s that old tartan blanket that lies in the boot of the car year round, or a special, waterproof backed one that means you can spread out anywhere, you’ll want a blanket to lay out your feast.

Napkins / Paper Towels - Picnics are messy things – sticky hands, spills and if you’ve packed well, drooling mouths! You don’t need to go fancy with cloth – a roll of kitchen towel will work just as well!

Plates, Cups and Utensils - While I’m a big fan of finger food – its half the fun after all – I also love potato salad and a veg packed couscous so either paper or plastic plates, and forks for everyone are required. And given that wine is a essential, you’ll certainly need cups! My advice is to leave your corkscrew in your picnic bag or basket!

A Bag or Basket to Carry Everything - You may have a lovely wicker basket, you may have an old chill box or bag, whatever you’re packing, do it with love and stuff it full!

Chilled Items - Unlike the picnics of the seventies when apparently salmonella didn’t exist, you can keep your chilled food cold on route to your destination. A chill bag with a cooler pack is great for ensuring your sliced ham and wedge of brie remain delicious until you’re ready to eat them!

Clean Up Supplies - Pack up all of your rubbish in a bin bag and make sure to dispose of it properly, You may also want to bring an extra for recycling.

Scottish Picnic Specials - Midge Spray, Avon Skin So Soft, and anything else you use to keep the little buggers at bay! Cagoules, wellies, umbrellas – that sunshine could disappear faster than the crispy cakes.
A tartan blanket – gingham tablecloths are for our continental cousins. Doubles up as a warm layer when the wind comes. A flask of hot soup – you know why!

The History of Picnics

Although many argue that picnics date back to the Middle Ages and respite from hunting, it was never named as such until the French Revolution popularised the picnic – or pique-nique - across the world.
As French aristocrats fled to other countries, their picnicking traditions came with them and in 1802, a fashionable group of over 200 aristocratic Londoners and well-known Francophiles, formed the Pic Nic Society.

Based out of rooms in Tottenham Street, there was no kitchen, and so all food had to be made elsewhere with each member expected to provide a share of the refreshments.

The Victorian Feast

Is there any wonder us food lovers enjoy a picnic? Just look at this Victorian feast from Mrs Beeton's picnic menus in her Book of Household Management of 1861. This lavish affair was set to feed 40 people and was mimicked by Claudia Roden in her own book, Picnics and Other Outdoor Feasts. Sign us up now!

A joint of cold roast beef, a joint of cold boiled beef, 2 ribs of lamb, 2 shoulders of lamb, 4 roast fowls, 2 roast ducks, 1 ham, 1 tongue, 2 veal and ham pies, 2 pigeon pies, 6 medium sized lobsters, 1 piece of collared calveshead, 18 lettuces, 6 baskets of salad, 6 cucumbers. Stewed fruit well sweetened and put into glass bottles well corked, 3 or 4 dozen plain pastry biscuits to eat with the stewed fruit, 2 dozen fruit turnovers, 4 dozen cheese cakes, 2 cold cabinet puddings in moulds, a few jam puffs, 1 large cold Christmas pudding (this must be good), a few baskets of fresh fruit, 3 dozen plain biscuits, a piece of cheese, 6 lbs of butter (this of course includes the butter for tea), 4 quatern loaves of household bread, 3 dozen rolls, 6 loaves of tin bread (for tea), 2 plain plum cakes, 2 pound cakes, 2 sponge cakes, a tin of mixed biscuits, ½ lb of tea.

Shop for Modern Day Picnic Items on Provender Brown >