Two Vegetarian Picnic Sandwiches | Saying Goodbye to a Friend

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

My very good friend M is moving to the other side of the country. We met training for the 3 day. She's one of those people who totally 'gets' me and we hit it off right away. We have so much in common, we can talk for hours and we have the same taste in shoes. I'm so sad she's leaving. The little kid in me is stomping her foot and saying, “it’s not fair!” over and over again. 

A few weeks ago, I decided I wanted to do something special for her and invited her on a beach picnic. I wanted to take food that would travel well, be easy to serve and would be budget friendly. To me, there’s only one perfect picnic food that meets all those requirements: Cheese!

I love, love, love cheese. Especially now that I have braces. No matter how uncomfortable I am, I can always eat cheese! I put together a great menu centered around cheese and crackers. If you plan to take cheese on a picnic, look for hard cheeses like an aged gouda, cheddar or parmigiano reggiano.

For dessert, I took fresh berries and some frozen whipped topping. I also made parfaits with chocolate pudding, whipped topping and crumbled chocolate chip cookies. They were divine!

M and I didn’t have the whole day to spend at the beach so I kept our meal light. But, if we’d had more time I would have made sandwiches. She’s a vegetarian and I would have needed something both of us could eat. Here are two easy sandwich recipes (with cheese!) that you don’t have to be vegetarian to enjoy that work well for picnics.

Apple Cheddar Panini

Whole grain bread
Low fat honey mustard
2 thinly sliced apples
Thinly sliced cheddar

Lightly and evenly spread honey mustard over bread. Layer apple and cheese slices. Lightly coat a panini press with cooking spray (I’d use my George Forman or cast iron skillet). Grill each sandwich for 3-5 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before packing.

Black Bean and Lettuce Cheese Wraps

1 15 oz can black beans
¼ c chopped chives or onions
½ c cooked brown rice
⅓ c Italian salad dressing
½ c crumbled Feta cheese
Boston lettuce leaves, washed and dried

Set beans and chives in separate small bowls. Combine rice, dressing and cheese in a third bowl. Lay the leaves flat and fill with rice mixture and then top with beans and chives. Or, combine the rice mix, beans and chives in one container and the lettuce in another so the wraps can be assembled onsite at your picnic.

The only silver lining about M leaving is that she's moving to Boston and I love that city! I'm sure I'll be able to come up with a reason to visit.

*While we were at the beach I made a short video to toast our friendship. It looks like I'm about to propose because M is trying not to cry! This is part of a series of sponsored posts for National Dairy Month and

1 comment:

  1. What a great friend you are. My best friend lives on the east coast (I'm on the west) and I miss her to death. Would love to be able to share lunch with her.


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