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Five benefits of alfresco dining 

Outdoor living is a big deal these days. Across the nation, we’re busy creating decking areas, erecting gazebos and laying patios to utilise our gardens as an extension of our indoor spaces. 

Blame it on the now expired Covid restrictions when we were encouraged to meet up in the fresh air or just call it ‘British grit’, our nature to ignore the weather forecast and get on with it. Either way outdoors is the place to be!  

There are several advantages to this trend – and one of those is alfresco dining.  

Some avid outdoor eaters happily go the whole hog, roasting a suckling pig that serves 30 guests over a fire pit. 

But eating outside doesn’t need a lavish setting, a showy centerpiece, or days of preparation – you don’t even need a table and chairs, a picnic blanket will do. 

Here are our top five ways to enjoy the great outdoors by going alfresco this summer. 


The sun’s out, the day has somehow run away with you and your family’s tummies are starting to utter a collective grumble. Hot dogs and burgers cooked on the barbecue and served on paper plates on a picnic blanket in the garden are a surefire way to keep everyone happy.

Lakings traditional Lincolnshire sausages are made to a family recipe and our burgers are made using off-cuts from our steaks and roasting joints. Order one of our online barbecue meat packs which include a selection of our most popular barbecue products from burgers to ribs, to steaks and kebabs, perfect for an impromptu family feast.

Pack a picnic

Barbecues tend to hog the limelight in the summer but there’s something quintessentially charming about a beautifully put-together picnic, whether you’re sitting in your garden at home, having a day at the beach or visiting the park.

And we have everything you need – from sausage rolls to perfectly cooked roast ham for sarnies. Pork pies, delicious cakes and bakes, or why not try a true Lincolnshire delicacy – stuffed chine, tasty collars of bacon, hand-sliced and stuffed with parsley.

‘Heaven’ for barbecue connoisseurs

All-year-round barbecuing is becoming big business in the UK, with the trend having started in the USA and Australia.

Now, Brits are buying ‘smokers’ and barrel barbecues, fuelled by either gas or charcoal, where the emphasis is very much on the gourmet barbecue experience. Barbecue experts have all the gear and plenty of ideas about what to cook. They use terms like ‘low and slow’ when cooking beef brisket and pulled pork and they’re always armed with a meat thermometer. If you know a barbecuing guru and they invite you to their alfresco dinner party – go, go, go!

A relaxed vibe

Alfresco dining tends to be more relaxed. Whether you’re sitting outside with a coffee, enjoying a breakfast roll made with Lakings bacon, picnicking on a sunny afternoon, or dining on spatchcock chicken with a green salad on a cool evening, with a blanket on your knees, being outside makes us feel like we’re on holiday. It’s a break from the norm, which means we often feel more relaxed, and we can all benefit from that.

A taste of the exotic

Warmer days remind us of our trips abroad. Often, we come back from our summer adventures and want to recreate the lamb kleftiko we tried in Santorini, a spicy Persian tagine, or pork belly bites from Barcelona. Alfresco dining encourages us to be more adventurous with our cooking.

Recipe inspiration for al fresco gatherings

Laking’s ambassador chef Rosie Dicker has created several dishes which are easy to make and even more amazing to eat. Try her Pork Chops with Chimichurri, Marmalade And Lemon Chinese-Style Chicken, Slow Cooked Beef Ribs and Butterflied Leg of Lamb with Harissa Yogurt. All can be cooked either on the barbecue or prepared in the kitchen to be served outdoors.

The finishing touches

Whether you’re visiting our shop in Louth or perusing Lakings’ website, you’ll find all of the finishing touches to elevate your alfresco meal to the next level. Visit the online pantry and choose from a wide selection of condiments.

You’ll find Mrs Darlington’s Piccalilli, a range of Lincolnshire cheeses, Mrs Darlington’s pickled onions, Mrs Darlington’s Spicy Tomato And Sticky Onion Chutney as well as ready-made sauces to go with steak and gourmet sauce kits (we even have one to help make that Moroccan Tagine if you don’t have time to make Rosie’s recipe from scratch).

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