7 Recipes for Simple Outdoor Hosting

Summer is the perfect time for tasty outdoor meals that last throughout an entire evening. Inspired by a few favourite recipes of Brigitte and Ricardo, who love to entertain at home, this menu is ideal for simplifying your life, from starters to dessert. These dishes require a little preparation before your guests arrive, but once they’re placed on the table, it’s an opportunity for everyone to enjoy the meal in good company until long after the sun sets.

1. Grilled Artichokes with Homemade Mayonnaise

Not only is it great for prettying up our outdoor tables, the artichoke is also one of Brigitte’s favourite vegetables. This recipe for grilled artichokes with homemade mayonnaise is cooked simply in foil on the grill with oil, salt and pepper. To enhance the flavour, serve it with a plain or truffle oil mayonnaise. But be sure to take the time to admire it before eating.

2. Vegetable Charcuterie-Style Platter with Prosciutto

For a guaranteed wow factor, display your vegetables as if they were actual charcuterie. Arrange delicate slices of prosciutto on a long wood serving board, along with strips of white turnip and chioggia beets cut into rosettes, making them look like blooming flowers. The former are marinated in paprika and fennel, whereas the latter simply with vinegar, salt and pepper. Garnish the whole with fresh herbs and enjoy without restraint.

3. Gluten-Free Anise Socca

A tasty way to welcome your guests is by offering them a slice of warm socca and a glass of rosé. Our version of the popular chickpea flour flatbread, a specialty in the south of France, contains fennel seeds as well as a touch of pastis (an anise-flavoured spirit) and a sprinkle of fresh rosemary.

4. Warm Feta with Tomatoes and Olives

Cook this warm feta salad with tomatoes and olives to give the classic Greek salad, one of Ricardo’s favourite side dishes, a light BBQ treatment. The feta cheese is first warmed up in a pan on the grill, then tossed with cherry tomatoes, Kalamata olives, sliced peppers, a bit of olive oil and fresh lemon juice. The final touch: a mixture of kasha (roasted buckwheat) and roasted pine nuts, which adds texture and crunch to the dish. Serve it directly in the pan, so that your guests can dip slices of socca or toasted bread.

5. Grilled Chicken with Ranch Dressing

Spatchcocked chicken cooked on the grill is one of Ricardo’s favourites. By letting the chicken cook over indirect heat on the grill, this allows you the opportunity to still sit, eat and chat with your guests. Then there’s the delicious, easy-to-prepare ranch dressing with dried herbs that serves as both a marinade and a dressing in this dish.

6. Nordic Shrimp-Stuffed Potatoes

When Ricardo cooks during the summer, you can bet that he’ll serve his famous Nordic shrimp pizza as well as loaded potatoes, two dishes he loves. The idea of this recipe was to combine both. A mixture of shrimp, cream cheese, celery and chives is used to garnish the potatoes. Just toss them on the grill and voilà!

7. Strawberry Shortcakes with Cream Cheese and White Chocolate

To cap off your meal, prepare this strawberry shortcake with a scone base, the most traditional version of this dessert. To make it more fun, you can even place the ingredients on a serving board and let your guests assemble their own dessert. Alternate with slices of scone, fresh strawberries and cream cheese and white chocolate cream.