Host the Perfect Parisian Picnic for Bastille Day

Celebrate the French National Day with a suitably tasty and stylish summer picnic


Use all the wonderful summer vegetables in this classic French ratatouille.

Bastille Day is the perfect excuse to spend a day living your chicest Parisian life, wherever you are in the world.

 With the sun shining, and eager to feast on all our favorite French foods, July 14, the French National Day, makes it totally appropriate for us to fill a picnic basket with baguettes, rosé, quiche, and macarons, and head out to celebrate the food and heritage of one of the most-loved European countries.

Host the Perfect Parisian Picnic for Bastille Day (Slideshow)

Obviously, a Parisian picnic is going to need to be a classy affair: You’ll need a wicker, old-fashioned hamper filled with fragile wine glasses, chilled wine, delicate tableware (not paper or plastic), and the softest picnic blanket. If you can, try to theme the tableware and setting of your picnic as red, white, and blue; the French national colors will hopefully make you feel like you’re really in Paris. Just don’t tell any French people you see that you’re actually using the decorations left over from the Fourth of July.

Once your hamper is filled with all the eating tools you need, it’s time to get started on the food. Of course you should include all your favorite French picnic-friendly classics, such as a perfect ham and cheese baguette, quiche, and a simple ratatouille. But don’t forget about those tasty snacks and spreads that are so wonderful when served with a crisp glass of rosé and fresh bread. Mushroom pâté is deeply flavored and totally addictive, salmon rillettes are wonderfully indulgent and rich, and of course it wouldn’t be a true Parisian picnic without a platter of charcuterie, cheese, and cornichons.

Before you pack up to leave and head back to reality, take a few moments longer to stretch out on your picnic blanket, finish off that bottle of wine, and end your meal with a beautiful apricot tart and a raspberry macaron or two.

Click here for the Bastille Day picnic recipes.

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