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Destination - Beach!

Destination - Beach!

     Now that spring is officially here, it’s time to start planning a summer vacation. For most people, unless they live by the water, a beach vacation is something they long for throughout the winter and into the spring. Basking in the warm sun, sand between the toes, an umbrella drink waiting to be enjoyed, the company of friends and loved ones. Sounds heavenly doesn't it?

     In the last several years, beach vacations have become more accessible with services like Airbnb and Home Away offering deeply discounted home rentals. Whether it be a family reunion or a get-together with a large group of friends, a vacation rental on the beach is the first step toward an amazing holiday.

     When travel time comes around, you can't forget the food. After all, humans can’t live on umbrella drinks alone can they? You’ll want to plan meals at your swanky beach digs, as well as food for those days when your plans include serious beach time, without a care in the world (except satisfying your hunger and thirst). So what are some good meals to plan for in-home dining and some meals and snacks for the beach?

     For in-home dining you can go all out and be a little more adventurous. Besides the kitchen staples, bring some foods you wouldn’t normally have in the course of your everyday life. Case in point, caviar. Not only is caviar the essence of elegance, enjoying caviar while on vacation adds a special twist that makes its inclusion unforgettable. You’ll want to serve it with some gourmet crackers or just prepare some toast points as delivery vehicles. And don’t forget a few tasty additions that pair perfectly, such as crème fraiche, chopped eggs, and onions. For the purist, a small spoon will do just nicely – no delivery vehicle or side dish necessary.

     If you’re packing for the beach, you’ll have other things to think about when meal planning. Whatever you choose should be easy to eat with one hand, just in case it’s a breezy day and you need your other hand to control whipping hair. Also, sand is a factor when it’s time to eat at the beach. You don’t want that same wind to bring you a mouthful of grit while you enjoy your packed lunch! Water, wind, and sand are what make the beach so special, but also make it challenging.

     For an optimal beach smorgasbord, include some wraps or pinwheel sandwiches for a substantial meal plus lots of finger foods. Whole fruits, olives, cashews, and cheese not only satisfy, but are also incredibly tasty. For dessert, pack cookies as opposed to chocolate, which could melt and be extra messy. Don’t shy away from pasta. An amazing pasta salad with fresh tomatoes and a high quality olive oil may require both hands while eating on the beach, but it’s worth it!

     And let’s talk a little bit about drinks. A beach vacation is the perfect opportunity to show some cocktail flair as guests wind down for the evening and talk about the day. Why not try some botanical mixers to take the vacation libations to the next level? Orange peel, ginger, vanilla, star anise, and all spice are just a few of the mixers that deliver flavor and aroma and take a drink from ordinary to extraordinary.

     A beach vacation with family and friends has the potential to make lasting memories. Amazing weather, wonderful ambience, and outstanding food and drink will guarantee a genuine feeling of getting away from it all.  

Beach-Ready Salchichon Pinwheel Sandwich

  • 8 thin slices white or whole-wheat sandwich bread, crusts removed
  • 3 ounces manchego cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 ounces Fermin Iberico Salchichon
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil 

Roll each slice of bread to 1/4-inch thickness with a rolling pin. Spread olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Distribute salchichon and cheese over each slice of bread. Carefully roll into a tight cylinder.

Wrap each cylinder in plastic and twist ends like a candy wrapper to completely seal. Chill for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Unwrap cylinders. Using a sharp knife dipped in hot water and wiped dry, cut each cylinder into 6 pieces. Arrange cut side up on a platter and serve at room temperature.